Appletreeman rarely has a day off in winter! We are still lifting trees for delivery as bare root trees, and this can continue as long as the soil is not frozen solid and when all the trees are sold and delivered of course. We are also in the process of cutting back 4,000 rootstocks, which are about 1.8m high, to the bottom bud. So there is quite a sizable bonfire to deal with at some stage! This job is done come rain or snow, though a half day is allowed in bad weather.
These stocks were budded (a form of grafting) in August, so we have also been taking the polythene off which has been protecting the bud from drying out. These stocks will then sit as little 10cm high stumps until the bud opens up (hopefully) in May, and forms a new shoot and hence your named apple tree variety.
If only the ground would dry up, we would also be ploughing a new patch of field (we move every year) and be planting our next batch of rootstocks for grafting and budding heritage varieties for 2015. So no winter hibernation here!