BOTANIST David Bellamy visited Washington Old Hall to help it celebrate getting funding for fruit growing.
The historic property has been given £2,000 from the Copella Plant and Protect campaign to invest in apple trees for its garden.
Ahead of National Apple Day on Friday, David planted his own variety, the Bellamy Fillbasket, helped by pupils from Barmston Village Primary School.
Other trees being planted at Washington Old Hall over the next few months will be specialist regional varieties including Barnard’s Baker, Teesdale Nonpareil and Mrs Lakeman’s Seedling.
David, an ambassador for the campaign, said: “The planting of apple trees in orchards around the UK allows visitors to see and experience the wonderful apples local to their area.
“As well as helping to reverse the decline in orchard numbers, we hope the projects will help to further nurture the nation’s interest in this marvellous home-grown fruit and inspire them to plant and protect more apple trees.”
Sarah Murray, from Washington Old Hall, said; “The funding will make a huge difference to us.
“It’s exciting to have some of our local varieties coming back to the area. It will really put us on the map as somewhere locals can come to learn more and have a great day.”