Funding for the Trees has been provided under the Borders Tree Planting Fund. Planting took place in early February 2020 with the students from Borders Agricultural College carrying out the work. Once again the primary schools pupils participated. The Trees have all been adopted by the school children and will be individually named as soon as the Autumn School Term resumes. In the spring of 2021, individual trees have been presented to each of the four schools involved in the planting.
All the trees are heritage varieties, with a tradition of growing in the Borders area.
Apple – Bloody Ploughman
Delicious, and a spectacular deep red colour. The season is September to November.
The story is that a gamekeeper shot dead a ploughman caught stealing apples from the Megginch Estate. When his body was returned to his wife, she found stolen apples in his pockets and threw them onto a rubbish heap. One of the resulting seedlings bore apples of a deep, blood red. This tree gave rise to the cultivar that was named after the unfortunate ploughman (source Wikipedia)
Apple – Ard Cairn Russet
From Cork, Ireland c. 1890 as identified orchard tree – Apple Ard Cairn Russet. … The fruit is round, medium-sized, and a golden russet with an orange-red flush. The flesh is cream-coloured, dry and sweet, lacking acidity, and with a distinctive, banana-like flavour. The tree is upright and spreading, and moderately vigorous..
Apple – James Grieve
James Grieve is an old variety of apple. It gets its name from its breeder, James Grieve, who raised the apple from pollination of a Pott’s Seedling or a Cox’s Orange Pippin apple in Edinburgh, Scotland some time before 1893
Apple – Egremont Russet
The Egremont Russet is a cultivar of dessert apple, of the russet type. It has a rich, nutty flavour and crisp, firm and fairly juicy flesh. It was first recorded in 1872, and is believed to have been raised by the Earl of Egremont at Petworth in Sussex
Apple – Lord Roseberry
Good early season eating variety. Originated in Glencarse, Perthshire, 1934, and named after the Liberal Prime Minister
Apple – Stobo Castle
Borders / Clyde Valley deep golden with a scarlet flush, Stobo Castle cooks to a sharp creamy froth. An early apple, named by David Storrie of Glencarse.
This apple was grown in 1708 from one of three apple pips sent from Normandy to Sir Henry Goodricke of RibstonHall at Little Ribston near Knaresborough, Yorkshire; the original trunk did not die until 1835. It then sent up a new shoot and, on the same root, lived until 1928. (source Wikipedia)
Pear – Flower of Monorgan
The Flower of Monorgan is found nowhere but in the extensive orchard of that name.
Apple – White Melrose (Cooker)*
White Melrose is a Scottish cooking apple. A white sport of ‘Apple Melrose’, Large, ribbed, round-shouldered apple, with pale green-yellow fruit. Tender and juicy with a sweet, sharp flavour when cooked. Delicious baked into apple pie, crumble or sauces etc. Heavy cropping and a spreading and vigorous tree.
History: Recorded in Scotland in 1831, but is thought to be much older, probably grown prior to the 1600s by the monks of Melrose.
Green Pear of Yair*
In the collection of the London Horticultural Society by 1826, its full age is unknown. Supposedly from Yair, Peeblesshire, Scotland, it is a medium oval pear with skin of dark green ripening to yellowish green. … Ripe in early September. The trees are vigorous, hardy, and prolific.
Ellison’s Orange is an English cultivar of domesticated apple, an offspring of the famous Cox’s Orange Pippin, which it resembles at most in looks and taste, but can develop a distinct aniseed flavour in storage.
This cultivar is named after its developer, C. C. Ellison, a priest from Lincolnshire, United Kingdom, who probably crossed it c. 1905 with an old French Calville style apple. (source Wikipedia)
Apple – Oslin (Arbroath Pippin)
It is described in 1815, but thought to be much older, and is associated with the founding of the Arbroath Abbey. Angus and East Coast – crisp, aromatic – delicious aniseed taste.
Apple – Discovery
‘Discovery’ is an early season dessert apple. One of its parents was the ‘Worcester Pearmain’, with the pollinator thought to possibly be ‘Beauty of Bath’. (source Wikipedia)
Conference: The easiest pear to grow and delicious to eat – the flavour is excellent. The hardiest and most reliable variety throughout Britain.
Apple – East Lothian Pippin
Cooker. Arose Scotland. Described 1883. Light green, almost pale fruit, quite small for a cooker.
Pear – Gourdie Hill
Dessert Pear from the Orchards of Dr John Hulbert, Tayside.
Origins dating back to the Tironensian monks (the Grey Monks) founders of Kelso Abbey.
Pear – Invincible*
Invincible is a typical modern French pear, with a sweet and juicy flesh, and a hint of violet.
Despite its delicate flavour, Invincible is one of the hardiest pear varieties, good for difficult situations which other pears would not tolerate.
*During the COVID-19 ‘Lockdown’ these three trees were stolen. The first two were taken between 19th April and 5th May 2020, and the third in March 2021.
We have replaced them ahead of the 2021 growing season, with the exception of “Pear Invincible” which we were unable to source. So, that tree was replaced with “Pear Gourdie Hill” .
August 2020: The trees are growing well and the apple trees have all produced fruit over the summer. Amusingly most of the fruit has disappeared. We are not sure if this is down to some four legged friends or two legged friends but we hope they enjoyed them anyway.