The Woodbridge orchard is now 4 years from conception, 3 years since ground preparation and the pollination of the local American chestnut (the Calistro tree), 2 years since the first 168 nut planting, 1 year since the second planting (Manchester tree nuts). Our Calistro backcross trees are now just under 4 feet tall!
Calistro seedlings after 2 season's of growth. [click on photo to see larger version]
The Woodbridge elementary school sent both the 3rd and 4th grade classes to the orchard for a field trip last spring. Parents and kids all were enthused about the program. We expect them back again in May 2008.
The orchard was included in a educational program in August 2007. We were the 2nd stop after a visit to the Sleeping Giant orchard in Hamden Ct. where a lecture was given by the CT Agricultural Experiment Station's (CAES) Sandra Anagnostakis, a national expert on the chestnut blight.
View of the Woodbridge Land Trust Orchard. [click on photo to see larger version]
Another view of the Woodbridge Land Trust Orchard. [click on photo to see larger version]
We expect to plant another 170 nuts this April, giving us three genetic lines in the orchard. Care of the trees has become more routine as we gain experience. Please feel free to visit if you are in the area.
Philip B. Arnold M.D. orchard manager