Stories from the Orchard - April


30 Apr 2024

At Puratos Fourayes the sun dances upon the branches of the Bramley apple trees, and a magnificent spectacle unfolds. A sea of delicate pink blossoms adorn the orchard, signalling the arrival of spring and the beginning of a new season.

As the blossoms open their eyes to the warmth of the sun, they welcome their familiar companions: bugs, birds, and bees. Each play a vital role in the orchard's ecosystem, contributing in their own unique way to the cycle of life.

The bugs, with their industrious nature, serve as both pollinators and predators, keeping the orchard free from harmful pests. Among them, the earwigs stand as nature's guardians against aphids, the bane of fruit trees everywhere. These nocturnal warriors patrol the branches, safeguarding the delicate blossoms and young fruit from devastation.

Above, the birds take to the skies, their melodious songs echoing through the orchard. Among them, the Gold Finch reigned supreme, earning the title of orchard protector as it feasts on winter caterpillars, granting the farm a reprieve from the need for chemical intervention.

But perhaps the most crucial of all are the bees, buzzing tirelessly from blossom to blossom, their delicate wings spreading life-giving pollen. 

Without them, the promise of a bountiful apple harvest would wither on the vine. With two million bees tending to sixty thousand trees, their importance cannot be overstated.

Yet, even among the bees, there are distinctions. While honeybees await warmer temperatures to take flight, solitary bees and bumblebees emerge earlier, ready to work in colder conditions. Their tireless efforts ensure that every blossom receives the attention it needs to bear fruit.

To support these vital pollinators, our orchardists take great care to provide suitable habitats, ensuring the orchard's continued prosperity.


As the seasons shift and the chill of winter has given way to the warmth of spring, our Bramley apple orchard in the Garden of England has come alive with the buzz of life. Amidst the blossoms and the bees, a symphony of nature unfolds, each creature playing its part in the timeless dance of renewal and growth. And in the heart of it all, the Bramley apple trees stand tall, their branches laden with promise, ready to yield the fruits of a season nurtured by the harmony of bugs, birds, and bees.

Swailey Love is the Farm Manager at Puratos Fourayes. With an absolute passion for farming and nature, Swailey brings a fresh and new approach to husbandry of the farm in working with nature. He comes from a farming family, bringing a wealth of experience. Swailey believes that "if you love your job and what you do, it isn't work".