Hawkes Urban Orchard Apple Tree Planting

Posted Mon 3 April 2017 | Big Chill

What better way to start the spring season than by planting apple trees in the sunshine? Well this is exactly what we did last Tuesday with our friends from Hawkes Brewery.

Staff from Brick Lane’s, Big Chill Bar swapped pulling pints for picking weeds to support the work of Open Orchard in the grounds of Deen City Farm.


We escaped the big smoke and descended on a quiet corner of South London, Deen City Farm is an urban farm, established within the grounds of Morden Hall and is charity supported by the council and local community. It relies solely on volunteers and fundraising events to keeps its doors open, and our task for the day was to freshen up a neglected corner of the farm with 30 new apple and pear trees.

Before we could get planting were given a brief intro, for those less green-fingered, by Ian from Open Orchard, who showed us exactly how and where to plant the trees.

With tools in hand we got straight to work, clearing the way for a new mini orchard. They say many hands make light work and no sooner said than done we were all digging! We split into small teams and the empty plot soon looked like spring had sprung. We were so rapid that Deen City Farm soon moved us onto more labour intensive jobs, including the removal of a huge long dead tree truck which took six of us to shift!


Hawkes always have local community in mind, alongside their apple donor program, they source their very own apples from community orchards and trees across London which is the key to giving their cider a truly unique taste.

After chopping and levering and many a round of applause from the public passing by, we earned ourselves a well-deserved coffee break, before getting straight back to it, finishing the morning with a bit more planting.

Before we knew it was lunchtime so we cleared up, packed away and jumped on the Northern Line back into town where our hard work was rewarded with pizza and cider at Fountain and Ink, Southwark. With the sun still shining and feeling really satisfied with our mornings work, the Hawkes cider went down nicely!


If you fancy checking on the progress of our trees or simply escaping the hustle and bustle of the big smoke, you too can visit Deen City Farm, it is just a short walk up from Colliers Wood tube station and we highly recommend it.

Or if putting your feet up and enjoying a refreshing glass of Urban Orchard Cider is more your style, then just call into Big Chill House or Big Chill Bar, when you are next in the area, and we will see to that.