Design 1- Apple tree guilds – update


Update on my experimental apple tree guilds 1 & 2

There really is nothing to update on both of these guilds, I got no yields from any of the plants, herbs or flowers I planted, although I did get lots of nettles, with which I made nettle tea for other areas of the garden.

I am not sure what to make of this. My lack of experience, planting the ‘wrong’ combination’, serious lack of sun over summer of 2012,  plots both in the deep shade of a very large sycamore tree. Anyway, nothing came up, but they did say last year was a bad year ;-))

Had one very small apple, on the second guild!! Maybe I need to move the apple trees?

On top of having no yield, the neighbouring trees were brought down in November and I now have a very large wildlife pile covering the whole plot… so back to the drawing board.

Need to take some advice about moving the apple trees.

Below is a copy of what I planted.

Design – Apple tree guild (1)

I decided to go for the classic text book design (Gaias Garden ~ Toby Hemenway) until I gain experience and can get some ‘feedback’, so the thinking is to use the bare soil and give it

some life and not spread out too far, keeping the archway and continuation into the lower part of the garden. The plants/elements I have chosen are mostly edible and support many functions (myself, the apple tree, the soil and wildlife).

Elements to be planted in the guild & their functions

Garlic bulbs planted around the base of the trunk, and garlic chive bulbs placed on the outer edge of the guild (drip line) to suppress grass.

Mulch plants

1 Comfrey plant, 2 Artichoke plants, Lots of red clover*, Couple of wild Strawberries as living mulch

Nutrient Accumulators

Parsley, Chives, Sorrel, Borage, Marigold, Lupin*

Nitrogen Fixers

Alfalfa*, Clover*, Lupin*

Insect attracting plants

Coriander, Parsley, Lemon balm, Angelica, Fennel, Alfalfa*, Marigold*

*Multiple functions

Design – Apple tree guild (2)

As above but the space around this tree is less due to a hedge behind it and a very large tree next to it.

Elements to be planted in the guild & their functions

Wild Leek planted around the base of the trunk and Garlic Chive b

ulbs around the outer circle to suppress grass

Mulch plants

Lots of Clover*, Nasturtiums, Wild Strawberries, Artichoke plant

Nutrient Accumulators

Borage, Lupin, Chives, Marigold*

Nitrogen Fixers

Clover*, Fava Beans, Tao Beans, Alfalfa*

Insect attracting plants

Alfalfa*, Angelica, Marigold*, Fennel (close by)



*Multiple functions


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