LostMeadowVT.com is named for my orchard located in the shadow of Long Meadow Hill in Calais (pronounced cal-is, like callous), VT. The name also refers to how we had to reclaim the orchard site from encroaching woods and puckerbrush when we first bought the place in 2002. At present we have about one acre cleared and enclosed in deer fencing, with more acreage to be cleared in the future. The initial orchard planting was made in the spring of 2004.
The main thrust of the orchard is to serve as a source of fruit for my cider efforts. Thus, many of the varieties will not be familiar, nor even edible off the tree. A good portion of the apples are old-world stock destined solely for cidermaking such as Dabinett, Michelin, Kingston Black, and Tremlett's Bitter. The dessert/eating stock that is planted is also a bit unusual, consisting of a mix of antique and interesting new varieties such as Hubbardston Nonesuch and Sweet 16, respectively. The orchard is intensively planted with presently about 60 trees on a one-quarter acre footprint with more trees in nursery rows for later planting. Rootstocks vary from Bud 9 at the smaller end to M7 EMLA at the larger end.
Most of the fruit are destined for the cider press, and the trees are managed with the final cider in mind. This includes not only allowing for or even encouraging some pest damage through low-input pest management systems, but also carefully controlling tree fertility through orchard architechture and nutrient management.
All of the first planting trees were purchased from Cummins Nursery, an excellent outfit in Geneva, NY in order to get a jump on planting. Since then I have started to graft my own trees for future blocks, and will continue to do so in the future.
The orchard should be always evolving, so check back seasonally to see what we're up to and check my Fruitblog for more regular updates.
All material Copyright Terence Bradshaw 2006-2013
terryb at lostmeadowvt dot com