Although the fruit yield was a real disappointment, the fruit trees themselves seem to be growing well. The Redsleeves and Tydemans Late Orange seem to be growing strongly. The Court of Wick is not as strong, but is in a worse spot. After some strong winds it was looking slightly less than upright. I hadn't staked either of the standards, hoping that they would build a stronger trunk that way. I tied it in to a nearby pole though to make sure it doesn't get blown over. Hopefully as it gets taller and clears some of the shade from the nearby winter jasmine it will thrive a little better.
I had a permanent loss from the trees in the garden earlier in the year. The Crataegus schraderiana came into leaf briefly early in the spring, but then died back completely and never recovered. It had looked pretty healthy last year, but the soil was quite poor where it was growing and I suspect the cold start finished it off before it got fully established. I was sad to see it go, but I consoled myself by thinking that I could do with the extra space anyway.
The hazel trees have grown well though this year. The Nottingham cob has reached about 2 m, about as high as I want it to get. The Kentish cob gave the first few hazelnuts this year. The Red filbert looks beautiful and is becoming more productive. The twisted hazel is very slow growing in its spot in the shade but looks good from the kitchen. They gave a reasonable harvest this year, but slightly down on last year.
Frosts are here now and the green vegetation is dying back. My South American tubers also suffered this year. The mashua that was a huge success last year got slugged before it got going properly and died right back, although my neighbour has some great plants from last year's tubers. I tried my hand at growing some oca too this year. It grew pretty well but the frosts have made it die back. I tried digging some up straight after, but found hardly any tubers. I'm leaving them in the ground a little longer to see if they develop but suspect that the season wasn't long enough this year.
The leaves on the trees have mostly fallen now. There is a great leaf mulch around the mulberry and hazel trees. The quince and Redsleeves apple still have their leaves which are a beautiful yellow now. Soon it will just be the hardy shrubs and evergreen holly to stick it out through the winter while the rest of the plants retreat into the underworld. I'll wish them goodwinter and look forward to seeing them in the spring.