Sir John Talbot's School Cox's Orange Pippin
This is one of The Tree Council’s 60 educational tree planting schemes with children that
were inspired by the Diamond Jubilee of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. Each tree, provided by The Tree
Council, was chosen and planted by volunteers in the community.
Students at Sir John Talbot’s School in Whitchurch, Shropshire, chose a Cox’s Orange Pippin as their Jubilee Diamond Tree, which they planted on 15th November 2013.
Year 9 students Lewis Jones, Lewis Wilson, Piers Heaver, David Jones, Oliver Wynne, Eddie Dale and Liam Thomas were involved in the planting, under the guidance of Sixth Form students James Metcalfe, Josh Edge, Nathan Szulc, Simon Dunsmore and Sam Boardman.
The students’ first task was to identify a location for the tree in a position where students, staff, parents and the community alike would be able to view and admire it for years to come. Following soil testing and consultation with Site Manager Mr Mike Armstrong, the students selected a shrub bed inside the main entrance to the school and on the approach to the school reception.
It is entirely co-incidental that when the tree bears fruit, the headteacher will be able to reach out of his office window and pluck the first apple!
Next the students had to consider the species of tree to select. There followed a long debate as several students favoured a horse chestnut tree, which would produce conkers in the autumn term. However, this species of tree proved to be too large for the preferred location.
The students then decided that they would like to plant a fruit tree. They researched several websites to ascertain facts about fruit trees and concluded that the Cox’s Orange Pippin would be an ideal size for the location, having the added attraction that the students would be able to pick and eat the apples once the tree bore fruit.
The students, under the supervision of the Director of Science Faculty, Mr Andrew Gregory, ordered the tree from Barcham Trees. The 3.5-metre tree was then planted by the students and secured in place with stakes and rubber ties.
The students are now responsible for the general upkeep of the tree. This includes watering it in dry weather and checking it for any deterioration in health, to ensure that immediate action can be taken to secure the long-term future of the tree, for later generations to enjoy.
Mr Gregory said: “The students have fully engaged in and managed the entire project, which has afforded them many positive learning opportunities.”
Photographs - top to bottom:
- 1. Putting the final touches to the planting are (from left to right): Mr Andrew Gregory, Liam Thomas, James Metcalfe, David Jones, Eddie Dale, Lewis Jones (with spade), Piers Heaver, Simon Dunsmore, Lewis Wilson, Nathan Szulc, Oliver Wynne and Josh Edge.
- 2. The students from year nine who selected the Jubilee tree and helped to plant it at
Sir John Talbot’s School. From left to right: Liam Thomas, Lewis Wilson, Piers Heaver, Lewis Jones, David Jones and Eddie Dale.