The rootstock lives on

      A dead Tsar plum tree riddled with rot and insects as well as being well drilled and weakened by the woodpeckers looking for their food. Although the aged fruit bearing tree has grown its last crop the rootstock lives on. The farmer told me that when his father planted the orchard the original Tsar plum tree was grafted onto a prunus rootstock and this graft has supported the tree for pretty well one hundred years. That's a lot of plums.
      Now the old tree will be separated from the rootstock and any timber that isn't suitable for logging and the fire will be left where it falls for the wildlife to colonise and break down into the soil.
      Meanwhile the original rootstock will be left to bear fruit in the form of Bullace and the Boss intends to make some Bullace gin or vodka and some jam too. That works for me.
      Yet again proof that every cloud has a silver lining.


  1. So will the old rootstock send up suckers? I wonder how long it could live if it does? It sounds effectively almost a plum coppice!

  2. Neil these are the suckers from the rootstock,. Some of the old pear trees, whilst still producing pears produce quince from the rootstock.

  3. Thanks. Think I get it - it doesn't matter if the main trunk is standing or not. Fascinating about the pear trees too.


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