We’ve now planted another 106 trees (and replaced a few casualties) although this very dry autumn has been particularly trying with everything needing watering long after planting, we’re praying for some rain now!
This year we’ve added more Bucanneer and Saturn and a few more Sychrov as well as three new varieties, Red Danube, Mars and Jupiter (spot the celestial theme!). The Red Danube is well known in southern Germany, Hungary and eastwards and the red kernels are prized by patisseries, the majority of the varieties we have originate in the Czech Republic or the vicinity.
Most traditional walnut plantations in Europe and around the world will concentrate on a small number of cultivars suited to their climate, soil and situation however we only have experience of small orchards in Kent or the south of England in this country and often those are of older French varieties.
The climate, soil and situation with us at the top end of the Cotswolds on Warwickshire clay (albeit on old ridge and furrow so great soil) is different and we really don’t know what varieties will prove the most productive, not just in crop weight but also in terms of flavour and quality. Therefore we’ve chosen to use a broad range of the varieties available commercially in the UK or europe based on the information we’ve been able to glean that we hope is relevant, time will tell of course.