Beespoke wildflower management workshop offers training for fruit growers - Fruit & Vine

Beespoke wildflower management workshop offers training for fruit growers

Fruit growers attending the upcoming workshop at NIAB East Malling in Kent will learn about the benefits of wildflowers in fruit production, how to select appropriate wildflower seed mixes, as well as strip establishment and management.

A wild flower strip in an orchard at NIAB in East Malling.

The event will take place on Wednesday 26th October between 9:30am and 12pm and will be run by NIAB entomologists as part of Beespoke, an EU-funded research project. During the workshop, local growers who have participated in the project will share their findings and experiences with the attendees.

The objective of Beespoke is to scale up the number of pollinators and crop pollination on both local and landscape scale by providing land managers and policy makers with the latest expertise, tools, and financial knowledge, paving the way towards more resilient and sustainable agroecosystems.

Wildflower strips are known to benefit fruit production with regards to both pollination and insect pest control. By developing new products and approaches, the project aims to increase the diversity of insect pollinators and fruit yields by 10%.

The event at East Malling will feature presentations from NIAB entomologists Michelle Fountain and Celine Silva, wildlife farming expert Marek Nowakowski from Wildlife Farming and Andrew Bourne, seed specialist from T Denne & Sons. Growers will also have the opportunity to view wildflower plots at various stages of development and to discuss their experiences.

NIAB knowledge exchange manager Scott Raffle said: “The fruit industry has been talking about the use and benefits of wildflower strips for many years and the Beespoke project has allowed our entomologists to put them into action both at the research station and on local commercial fruit growing sites. I encourage growers and their staff to come along and learn about our combined experiences.”

To register for the event and view the programme, visit:

NIAB entomologist Dr Michelle Fountain speaking about the benefits of wild flower margins.

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