Horticulture Wales celebrated its recent Orchard Blossom Day in collaboration with the Woodland Skills Centre to highlight the vital role of biodiversity and sustainable practices within the community.

The Shared Prosperity Fund (SPF) initiative based in Flintshire and Denbighshire, is committed to fostering sustainable horticulture practices throughout Flintshire and Denbighshire.

Through workshops and collaborative events like Orchard Blossom Day, they strive to deepen the community's connection with the natural environment.

The day began with participants constructing bat boxes to enhance local biodiversity and support the region's natural ecosystem. This hands-on activity was complemented by a lunch featuring 100% Welsh apple juice, kindly donated by Cultivate, Newtown, adding a heritage flavour to the gathering.

Rod Waterfield from the Woodland Skills Centre highlighted the importance of local initiatives in sustainability: “Woodland Skills Centre is interested in incorporating sustainability into daily life. We continue to develop our Heritage Orchard as part of the national drive to produce food locally and avoid unnecessary transport costs.”

Attendees also enjoyed a guided tour of the Wales Heritage Orchard, adorned with spring blossoms, providing an ideal learning environment.

Rebecca Bird, Project Development Officer at Horticulture Wales, expressed her enthusiasm about the project's impact: “The Orchard Blossom Day celebration was a perfect example of our mission at Horticulture Wales — merging community involvement with environmental sustainability. These events not only educate but also forge lasting partnerships that nurture both our local ecosystems and community spirit.”

Throughout this project, the Horticulture Wales team, driven by Wrexham University, has conducted a variety of educational workshops.

Topics have included growing your own microgreens, apple tree pruning and grafting, hydroponics, and wildflower and tree planting. These workshops are designed to empower community members with the knowledge and skills necessary for effective sustainable horticulture.

To stay informed about future workshops and initiatives, join the mailing list at horticulturewales.co.uk/new-member-application/.

For more information, please contact horticulturecluster@wrexham.ac.uk