Redbyrd Orchard Classes for 2023

Our ORCHARDISTS SERIES classes are designed around the perspective that an orchard is not only a food system but a safe haven for wildlife, a sequesterer of atmospheric carbon and a work of art, beauty to the eye. Our courses offer the skills needed to help anyone establish and maintain a successful orchard system no matter your knowledge level and what your goals may be.  We are a small scale orchard operation and hope to bring those unique skills and ideas out into the orchard with you!  All classes are led by Eric, cidermaker & orchardist here at Redbyrd Orchard Cider, Cornell Orchard Research Farms & Orchard manager from 2010 thru 2020, and vineyard manager & head winemaker in the Finger Lakes region from 2002-2010.



Redbyrd’s All About Pruning Class:

The pruning shears are the orchArtist’s paint brushes. Pruning is the guiding of formation of the structure of the tree. Pruning is communicating with the tree. Pruning has the potential to open the interior of the tree to sunlight, to regulate where fruit buds form and how many remain on the tree, and to open the branch structure to allow for better air flow within the tree. Pruning techniques differ greatly depending on the species, on the age of the tree, it’s rootstock, it’s planting system and your specific artists goals.–

In this workshop learn 
     – pruning young and old apple trees
     – pruning dwarf trees
     – pruning semi dwarf & full size trees
     – physiological responses to different    
       pruning cuts    
     – looking at and discussing different 
       planting systems
Sunday January 29th, 1-3pm


Redbyrd’s Grafting, Topworking, Scionwood Gathering & Growing Seedlings Class:

Some of our trees are seedling trees, trees grown from seed, the root system has the same genetics as the branches. Most of our trees are grafted where the root system is essentially a different “person” than the branches above. Grafting was developed as a tool for growing similar apple varieties or clones and for “putting them on better roots” to achieve specific agricultural goals. Grafting considerations are valuable in orchard design, in orchard redesign ( top-working), in bringing superior wild apple cultivars into cultivation and in eating more of that apple you love. Learn this age old art and take home a tree from a scion of your choice. —

In this class you will learn – 
     – Grafting technique (making a new tree)
     – Topworking technique ( grafting existing
       trees over to other varieties)
     – Looking at examples of different 
       trees on different rootstocks at maturity 
     – Discussing orchard design and 
       differing rootstock attributes 
     – Take home scionwood or graft your 
       own tree to take home

find out more and register here

Sunday March 12th, 1-3pm


Spring Orchard Walk and Discussion

The beginning of the growing season for a Orchardist is the most critical time to stay on task and stay focused on orchard health and care. Join us for this walking class in the orchard and discuss tree bud development and thoughts on pest management and orchard health and ask any questions you might have.


The walking orchard class will be fun, informative, and active. Check out the trees, learn a bunch, ask a ton of questions, say hi to the sheep and geese and stick around after if you’d like to share in some cider and further conversation (a free add-on option).

Sliding scale options available.

We can’t wait to see you!

Date TDB….stay tuned


and more to be offered throughout the year

 Redbyrd Orchard is located in the rolling hills of the Finger Lakes region of Upstate New York, on the traditional Gayogohó:no nation lands of the Haudenosaunee Confederacy. The Confederacy precedes the establishment of New York state, and the United States of America.

In acknowledgement, a portion of sales from our orchard are contributed to Ganondagan. Find out more about the Iroquois White Corn Project here.

We support the Northeast Farmers of Color Land Trust and we hope you will too! Find out more here and become a patron here. Thanks! “NEFOC is working towards a collective vision of advancing land and food sovereignty in the northeast region through permanent and secure land tenure for POC farmers and land stewards who will use the land in a sacred manner that honors our ancestors dreams – for sustainable farming, human habitat, ceremony, native ecosystem restoration, and cultural preservation.

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