Thursday, 11 August 2011

Morello Cherry Tree

 Now for something totally different.
Many years ago I planted a small  cherry tree in my tiny garden,  the first year it produced just three cherries.... one for each of us.
The second year it gave 10 and each year the crop has increased.
When we moved house,  we took the cherry tree with us.
Over the last twenty years I guess you could say we have watched each other grow and mature.  I love to see it  in the spring when it's covered in blossom.
Come early summer it's a mass of red cherries, but the last few years we have had a  major problems starlings stripping the tree bare before the cherries have had chance to ripen and turn to a deep red/ purple.

Last year I came up with this wacky idea of  making net bags  and sleeves to cover the  fruit bearing branches.
 I bought twenty metres of dress netting in different colours and set about making loads of bags and sleeves.. They didn't take long to make at all.
I climbed the tree and slipped the bags and sleeves over as many branches as I could .
 WOW! It's best idea I have had in a long time.

Even though we still lose half the crop to the birds we still managed to get enough fruit  to give cherries to family, friends, and neighbours and still have plenty for cherry pies, cherry turn overs,  cherry conserve, cherry liqueur and of course just eating them they taste so much better than shop bought ones too.
The down side is I have a very odd  looking cherry tree for a few months of the year
and during the weeks the fruit is ripening  I can't use  the washing line, the laundry gets splattered with cherry juice as the birds tuck into them and then they mess on the laundry, that's a problem still waiting to be solved.

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