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Choosing your favourite fruit tree

Fruit Trees

Fruit Trees are a fabulous & edible addition to your garden. The most popular tree fruit sold in our garden centre is an apple tree, providing one of your five a day from your garden. When the correct decisions are made when purchasing an apple tree, they can be very productive – find out below the different factors to consider. We have concentrated on apple trees throughout but many of these factors apply to all other types of fruit trees.

Type of apple

The first choice you will have to make is the kind of apple you want, either a dessert apple or a cooking apple, bear in mind that to get a good harvest it is necessary to have two trees to pollinate each other. So you can also have both types of trees too! In the North West where our garden centre, Lymefield is based, we would recommend mid- to late- flowering varieties to reduce the risk of the blossoms being damaged by late frosts.

Triploids or Not

Just to add to the decision, another thing that needs considering is that some varieties are triploids. These fruit trees are very poor pollinators and therefore if you wish to grow one that is a triploid (i.e. Bramley Seedling) then two other trees will need to be planted to ensure the best possible chance of pollination.

Pollination season

Below is a very brief list of a few popular apple tree varieties and their flowering times: Mid Season Flowering
  • Cox’s Orange Pippin (d)
  • Discovery (d)
  • Elstar (d)
  • Epicure (d)
  • Fiesta (d)
  • Granny Smith (d/c)
  • James Grieve (d)
  • Worchester Pearmain (d)
  • Bramley Seedling(Triploid) (c)
  • Crispin(Triploid) (d/c)
Mid/Late Flowering
  • Gala (d)
  • Golden Delicious (d)
  • Howgate Wonder (c)
  • Laxtons Superb (d)
  • Jonagold(Triploid) (d)
(c)=culinary (d)=dessert Ideally, you would be better off choosing two varieties that flower in the same season, either from mid-season or mid/late season. But do bear in mind that all trees will aid in pollination of each other.


Another major factor is what rootstock the tree has been grown on as fruit trees are often grafted onto another type of tree to aid growth. An apple growing on its own root i.e. if you planted an apple seed and just let it grow into a tree, would not be strong and it would take many years to fruit. However, if the apple tree is grafted onto a specially selected root stock, the eventual size of the tree can be determined and fruiting takes place much sooner. The very dwarfing rootstock (M27) will only allow the tree to reach approx 6ft but the disadvantage is the cropping capacity is quite poor. A more successful alternative would be a semi-dwarfing rootstock, such as MM106, which can support a tree of 14ft but can produce five times more fruit on the same variety of apple than a M27 rootstock.

Supported or not

The final decision to make is whether you want the tree free standing or supported. A freestanding tree can be trained into various shapes. A bush apple tree will have an open centre and a short trunk this gives the tree an advantage as it will come into fruit early and they are easy to maintain but not very attractive as a centrepiece. A standard fruit tree, where the tree has a long trunk and a round top, is suitable where space is not restricted and high yields are important. These larger trees, however, can be difficult to maintain. Alternatively, the tree could be supported (trained) along a frame as a cordon, where a single-stemmed tree is planted at an angle and trained along a support. This is an ideal solution for growing a few varieties where space is at a premium.  Another way is an espalier, where pairs of branches on opposite sides of the trunk a trained horizontally.  Both of these trained versions of fruit trees have the advantages of high yields and are very decorative but they can take up quite a lot of space and need lots of maintainence.

Come to Lymefield Garden Centre

At Lymefield, we have lots of choice of apple, pear & other fruit trees for you to choose from. You can find a selection online at or visit us to see the trees in real life, we are open 7 days a week & have lots of expertise & advice to help you choose your fruit tree.
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Manure for delivery in Manchester

Using Farm Manure In The Garden

In the early months of the year, we can usually expect some of our coldest weather and there is good reason to assume that little can be done in the garden at this time however is not necessarily the case! Preparation in your garden for the upcoming growing season is vital and the use of farm manure in the garden can play a big part. Manure is a natural, organic material rich in nutrients with multiple uses throughout the garden. Its a great allrounder for boosting your garden & plants, use it for mulching, feeding plants, or as a soil improver.

Manure for Mulching

In basic terms, mulching is the method of placing manure or bark around the base of plants and shrubs, this is usually done for the winter months. By doing this you are creating a layer of natural matter which helps to improve soil structure. Mulch is very useful as it can help to retain moisture and keep the soil warmer around plants. Placing an extra layer on top of the soil, farm manure can also help to suppress weeds and adds nutrients to the soil as it rots down further.

Manure for feeding your Beds and Border

Start looking preparing your garden beds and borders for spring as early as possible, from Autumn onwards. Take any opportunity when the ground is not frozen to dig in your farm manure. If you have raised beds for growing vegetables, turn the soil over and add some fresh well-rotted manure, making sure that it is mixed in well. Manure is an economical fertilizer too – well-rotted manure is very rich in nutrients so a little goes a long way. This will provide a new wave of nutrients for the next batch of seeds and seedlings that you plant. The same applies to flower beds containing bedding plants such as Pansies and Violas adding some fresh manure will give your spring bedding a real boost.

Manure as a soil improver

Many of us have an area of the garden where the soil quality is poor. Areas that have had hedges and trees taken from them, for example, will be devoid of nutrients therefore by adding manure, will reinvigorate the soil in this situation. Similarly, areas that suffer from heavy clay will benefit from adding manure to the existing soil as it helps to break the clay down over time and subsequently improve drainage.

Manure Delivered to you

Our different types of manure, here at Lymefield, can all be delivered to you. Our locally obtained well-rotted Farm Manure is provided in bulk bags. These can be delivered by ourselves throughout the Manchester, Derbyshire, and Cheshire areas. They are an extremely cost-effective way of buying manure. Secondly, we also supply Westland Farmyard Manure rich in organic matter. Available in 50-litre bags these are light and easy to carry, ideal for areas with awkward access. All manure products in bulk bags and 50-litre bags can be delivered to your door wherever you are in the UK. Our Delivery Service transports our products to all our local postcodes including Greater Manchester, Cheshire, and Derbyshire. Plus we use a Pallet service to provide our bulk bag products nationwide deliveries.

To order manure and for further help and information just call us on 01457 764686 or order online.


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Working at Lymefield Garden Centre

faded picture of the front entrance to Lymefield Garden Centre with the words Working at Lymefield over the top of the image.

Join the Lymefield team!

Click our ‘Join our team at Lymefield’ page on the footer for current vacancies.


Lymefield Garden Centre is made up of four distinct areas of work, Garden Centre, Farm Shop, Tea Room & Landscaping. Each of these departments is customer-facing & requires the key skill of teamwork. We call ourselves the Lymefield team as many areas of our jobs overlap making working together essential. Throughout the year, our Garden Centre is a hive of activity beyond the sales through the till. We host many events for ourselves & for our local charities. These include a Santa’s Grotto, a Pumpkin Patch, Coffee Mornings, Pop-up Stall, Food Tastings & we are always adding more. Teamwork is essential for these events to work as our team is small but very productive. 

Teamwork is vital to ensure that the customer has the very best experience when they visit Lymefield. Working together to solve problems & delivery the very best service every time has always been at the front of the Lymefield Garden Centre ethos.

Continuous Learning

An expectation at Lymefield is that each member of staff will take on training & learning throughout their role, this may involve gaining qualifications, keeping updated with current legislation or teaching our newest staff members & apprentices. Be ensuring that everyone is continuously learning we can expand roles, host different events, & give our customers to best experience whenever they visit Lymefield.

Caring for the Environment

One of the things that staff regularly mention is the beautiful environment in which our place of work is set. Lymefield Garden Centre is placed in the river Etherow Valley with trees, woods & fields surrounding us on all sides.
Coming down into Lymefield from the village of Broadbottom, the sky opens out for our buildings & car park. There are often sheep in the fields for you to admire, buzzards can be spotted flying high in the sky as they hunt for prey & during the summer, there are plenty of migrating birds including swallows & swifts.
To add to the animal spotting, you will also meet our resident dog, Jyp. She is the family dog, living & playing in Lymefield Garden Centre. She is a friendly dog as she always wants to play ball, occasionally asking for strokes & cuddles but mainly it’s about playing with the ball, please!

Starting a New Job

If you would like to be part of a team that values each other & their work environment, please CLICK HERE for our current vacancies. 
If you want to know more or you want to meet our team, please call in during work hours to chat & ask questions. We do value everyone who makes the special trip to find us for work at Lymefield Garden Centre. 
Follow us on our Social media links for more information on our work, services, events & job vacancies – we hope to meet you soon.