European Orchard Day 2021 & 2022
On 30 April 2021, the European Orchard Day was celebrated for the first time. We were overwhelmed by how many people responded to our joint call and created, participated in or drew attention to the orchards! On the following European Orchard Day on 29 April 2022, an incredible 100 actions and events were organised all over Europe.
Greetings from all over Europe
„The overarching goal of Hochstamm Deutschland e.V. is preservation through utilization. We consider the Orchard Day as an instrument in order to make consumers more aware of 100%-orchard products and to encourage them to buy these products.“
„Flowering orchard trees are like paradise on earth. The Day of the Orchard is like Mother's Day for biodiversity and Father's Day for our habitat and our cultural landscape! It is the strongest statement for sustainability and aims to raise awareness for products made from scattered orchards.“
„Orchards offer exciting experiences - there's something for everyone. Scattered orchards offers special products with recipes that are centuries old, such as cider or perry.“
„The discussion on the intensification of agriculture at EU level ignores the fact that the major planetary crises pose a major threat to our food security. We must therefore finally take action against the natural crisis. Natural, high-stem orchards are a good example of how to reconcile nature conservation and land use.“
„Hello I am Sonja Golc. Dear orchards lovers I am sending you greetings from Slovenia- area of Haloze in North-eastern part of Slovenia. Haloze is a hilly area with steep slopes with a lot of vineyards and also orchards.
In our Haloze – Čerinovo Nature Park we removed overgrowth and in part of the area arrange the pasture for animals and in other part we planted more than 200 trees of old local varieties of fruit (apple, pear, cherry, plum and others). That were activities of the LIFE TO GRASSLANDS project in the period between 2019-2020. The trees were planted in 2020, so our orchard is very young. We look forward to support the European Orchard Day with our event this Friday (as we did last year, too). We will show different works in young orchards.
Thank you for the invitation and have a nice day still and even better Orchard Day. Here is the link to photos from establishing our Nature Park Haloze-Čerinovo.“
„Southwest of Paris lies the valley of the Yvette. An Agenda process has given rise to a group of volunteers who are committed to preserving and increasing biodiversity and maintaining the unique landscape. In addition to beekeeping and landscape conservation measures, we are primarily concerned with the topic of orchards. This includes the removal of bushes from former orchards and the care of old trees. But we also actively plant new orchard areas and teach stakeholders about planting, caring for and grafting orchard trees. We regularly organise guided tours, planting and pruning courses in our orchard areas and, of course, celebrate with the delicious produce from the now again more than 50 different varieties.
We are happy to be part of the European orchard network and hope to gain a lot of knowledge and experience so that we can pass on the necessary expertise and know-how for the preservation of orchards here on site.
„We are a small farm in beautiful Tuscany and produce and market our own olive oil, among other things. The beautiful landscape of Tuscany, which is particularly popular - also with tourists - has its current character not least through the cultivation of scattered fruit. Olive trees are also part of the European orchards. They are associated with a particularly high biodiversity of their own, because olive groves represent a very special habitat of their own. For centuries, olives have been cultivated on land that is enclosed by dry-stone walls built in a special way. This results in a unique habitat with a special biotope and microclimate. Of course, not only the use of the particularly delicious olive oil is important for its preservation, but also a wealth of expertise - not only in the cultivation of the olive trees, but also in the preservation of the unique dry stone walls.
„With over 180 varieties of Irish apple trees on around 11 hectares, we are Ireland's leading grower of certified organic apple trees. Each year we grow a wide range of varieties and make them available to the public as bare-root and potted trees. Our bare-root selling season starts every year in October and we have a selection of potted trees all year round. Our aims are to research, collect, protect and provide and curate Ireland's national apple tree collection. We make the apple tree varieties available to farmers, schools, community groups, traditional fruit growers, home gardeners and supporters so that they can grow and reap the many benefits of not only growing their own food, but also helping to protect Ireland's biodiversity and food heritage and ultimately our food security. Only the orchards on our land in Co Clare enable Ireland to meet its European obligations in the field of conservation and sustainable use of plant genetic resources in food and agriculture. Our DNA fingerprinting and analysis project draws its conclusions. After some delay, we have now received data for all trees from three gene banks at the Irish Seed Savers Association, University College Dublin and the Agriculture, Food and Bioscience Institute in Loughgall Armagh. We have converted the data into an applicable format and used it to inform a thorough conservation strategy. From a European genetic resource and food protection perspective, we now know what is ours, what we can finally hang up as uniquely Irish and what we need to do to effectively conserve each variety in a national apple collection in the long term.
Following the example of Germany and Austria, we also want to set out on the path towards the recognition of orchard cultivation as Intangible Cultural Heritage in Ireland."
Video of the press conference
Cover Photos: Shutterstock, Rudolf Schneider, Andrea Letsch, Manfred Wolf, Angela Hammer