March is all about seeds and deciding what to grow for the season ahead. In terms of sowing this month beet, French and runner beans and peas have been sown in our propagation tunnel. Tomatoes and peppers have been pricked out and broad beans will be planted out shortly. Overwintering radishes are coming back to life after roughing and de-leafing. The Seed Team are busy processing supporters orders. We are delighted that the amount of supporters availing of their free seeds grows each year.
The Orchard Team are busy bench grafting apple trees in order to propagate new trees from our heritage varieties, potting on two year old Irish Heritage apple trees for community orchard and urban orchard projects, completing pruning in our heritage orchards and planting rootstocks to upscale our supply of potted trees for the Glas scheme commencing in 2023. These activities enable Irish Seed Savers to meet conservation targets and ensure a supply of Irish Heritage apple trees to the public.
Maintenance work on the land remains constant. As part of The Hare’s Corner project, run by The Burrenbeo Trust, we have finished development of a new pond area to promote biodiversity on our site and planted a significant stand of Burren pine thought to be extinct.
Some of our staff planting native Burren Pine
Eamonn McLaughlin from the Hedge Laying Association of Ireland has demonstrated the traditional country craft of hedge laying and ran a course onsite rejuvenating our hedgerows to provide a habitat for wild birds, plants and insects. To find out more about hedge laying and why it is important visit www.hedgelaying.ie