Fruit-cage and Orchard

  • If deep snow comes wrap old clothes or wire netting around fruit tree trunks to stop rabbits chewing the bark
  • Knock heavy snow off fruit cage roof, valuable plants and anything bending under the weight
  • If heavy snows come protect plum and gooseberry buds from bullfinches with bird scarers
  • Cover outdoor peach and nectarines with plastic sheet as if kept dry over these months they do not suffer leaf curl
  • Check straps and tree ties are neither tight nor slack and stakes solid
  • Set or re-touch anti- crawling-pest sticky bands around tree trunks
  • Cut to ground all canes of autumn fruiting raspberries
  • On a bright sunny day take a long cane and knock any mummified fruits off trees as this considerably reduces rots later
  • On a bright day look for huge Big Buds (round and several times bigger than healthy pointed buds) on blackcurrants, remove and burn stems with these
  • Scrape loose bark off old grapevines after they’ve been pruned to remove hidden pests
  • Spread garden compost around fruit trees and bushes in a thick doughnut shaped ring so it will break down and weather in slowly