Orchard Origins

Orchard Origins

Herefordshire orchard products - good for body and soul!

Orchard Origins offer:

  • Delicious artisan orchard products from blended apple juice to chef's cider vinegar
  • Orchard Management services for orchards which are productive and a haven for wildlife
  • Workshops & training to enable you to care for your own fruit trees
  • Volunteering opportunities to improve well-being and gain new skills

Our Story

Orchard Origins is committed to preserving traditional orchards and their rich biodiversity. With sensitive management, our aim is to help these important wildlife habitats survive and thrive.

Orchard Origins was launched by Herefordshire Wildlife Trust in 2012 with a grant from the Big Lottery Fund’s (now the National Lottery Community Fund) Local Food scheme.

Environmental Aims

Traditional orchards are one of our most threatened habitats. Although Herefordshire has more traditional orchards than any other county, like orchards everywhere they are constantly under threat from housing development, more intensive farming methods and neglect.

Traditional orchards are recognized as woodland pasture and are hotspots for biodiversity. They provide an important refuge for a wide range of wildlife including a number of species that are conservation priorities such as the lesser-spotted woodpecker, dormouse, noble chafer beetle and the mistletoe marble moth. In 2007, traditional orchards were designated as a priority habitat in the UK Biodiversity Action Plan.

Our aim is to help conserve these vulnerable habitats for the long-term by providing an orchard maintenance service, skills training and education.

Social Aims

Research shows that supporting people to be active outdoors benefits their mental well-being.

Orchard Origins works with volunteers from all backgrounds, but it actively encourages and supports people who have mental health issues. Working with Herefordshire Mind, the charity for better mental health, Orchard Origins has been training volunteers in different aspects of orchard management. Each week the team put what they have learnt into practice in the orchards.

"There's no pressure on you when you're there, that helps a lot... the other volunteers help too, over the day you feel better." Herefordshire Mind Volunteer

According to the feedback from volunteers, a day working in the orchard has a positive affect on their health and their sense of well-being. It is not just about physical activity, there is also the satisfaction gained from being involved in something worthwhile. Transforming a sad, neglected collection of trees back into a healthy, productive orchard can be very fulfilling and produce a real sense of achievement.

We strive to develop links and partners with marginalized groups by improving and actively managing well-being.

Our Services

Orchard Origins offers a range of fruit tree and orchard services and assessments. We specialise in orchards that balance fruit production with supporting wildlife.

We want to pass on our skills to others. Friends and family are always welcome to join us so that we can share the whys and hows of what we do.
All the income from our pruning services goes toward supporting the environmental and social goals of Orchard Origins and Herefordshire Wildlife Trust.

Orchard Surveys & Reports

We will visit your orchard, assess the site and write a fully comprehensive management plan. The enhanced report will also include research into the wider landscape and surrounding habitat.

Pricing from £75

Pruning Services

Pruning is undertaken by staff on an hourly or daily basis, either with or without volunteers. All work is supervised.

Pricing from £30

Fruit Tree Planting

Whether you want a single tree planted, gap planting in an existing orchard or help planting a new orchard, we will work with you to achieve this. Fully insured, we supply trees and all supporting kit.

Pricing based on a quote.

Juicing & bottling service

Orchard origins offers a specialist juicing and bottling service.

Juicing is a great way of processing a large amount of apples and enjoying them long after the eating season is over. In our purpose built juicing shed we are able to produce apple juice to retail standards, so whether you want juice for your own consumption or intend to sell it on you can rest assured that it is of the highest quality.

Keeping it pure
We only press ripe apples giving your juice a full and aromatic flavour
We refrain from adding anything extra to your pressed juice, simply pasteurising it so it has a shelf life of two years
We use green glass bottles which helps protect your juice from premature deterioration

What we ask from you
Hand pick from the tree – bruised or contaminated apples cannot go into juice as there is a risk of pathogens
Deliver ripe and ready to press – unripe apples make inferior juice and we don’t have storage capacity
No less than … and no more that!

Equipment Hire

Costs refer to a weekend hire charge. Relevant protective
accessories are included.

  • Pole Saw Kit ... £20.00
  • Pruning Belt Kit ... £15.00
  • Manual Scratter ... £15.00
  • Basket Press ... £15.00
  • Spiedl scratter ... £50.00
  • Bladder press ... £50.00 - £65
  • Pasteuriser ... £15.00
  • Tripod Ladders ... £15.00 - £25.00

Volunteering with Us

​​​​​​"There's no pressure on you when you're there, that helps a lot... the other volunteers help too, over the day you feel better." Herefordshire Mind Volunteer

Research shows that supporting people to be active outdoors benefits their mental well-being.

Orchard Origins works with volunteers from all backgrounds, but it actively encourages and supports people who have mental health issues. 

According to the feedback from volunteers, a day working in the orchard has a positive affect on their health and their sense of well-being. It is not just about physical activity, there is also the satisfaction gained from being involved in something worthwhile. Transforming a sad, neglected collection of trees back into a healthy, productive orchard can be very fulfilling and produce a real sense of achievement.

Getting involved

Our practical volunteeer group takes place every Friday - rain or shine - with additional days at busy times. Office based roles may be available on other days.

However you choose to get involved, volunteering is a great way to learn new skills, share your own expertise, meet different people and spend time in our wonderful Herefordshire countryside.

Please contact Laurence or Julia for more information about volunteering with Orchard Origins: orchards@herefordshirewt.co.uk / 01432 356872

Corporate Volunteering

Orchard Origins can also host corporate volunteering days which usually take place on one of Herefordshire Wildlife Trust's nature reserves. A day spent outdoors, tending to a traditional Herefordshire orchard is a great way for your staff to recharge and reconnect to one another - while doing something great for our landscape and wildlife!

Please contact Laurence or Julia for more information about corporate volunteering with Orchard Origins: orchards@herefordshirewt.co.uk / 01432 356872

Girl in orchard

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Image credit: Fergus Coyle