Sunday, March 16, 2008

Spring Chores

The weather seems to have broken, and none too soon as far as I am concerned! We can now get into the garden and here are some spring chores that need doing:

Now is a good time to do some pruning on your trees before they start to leaf out and the structure becomes obscured. Gerard took me out the nursery last week and showed me some pruning techniques. He also gave a great presentation last Saturday at the store. If you missed it, stop by and ask for the handouts.

Examine your trees and remove any branches that are crossing or rubbing together. Also remove any branches that are brushing up against your house or other structure. Remove any sucker growth or water sprouts. When making your cuts remember to make them with a 45-degree angle.

Sometimes the branch is too big to cut with a pruners and must be sawn. If this is the case use the 3-part method to cut the branch. Make the first cut from the bottom a foot or so away from where the final cut will be made. Make the second cut from the top just over where you made the first cut. Make the final cut at the correct place as shown in the example on the left.
KC reports that now is also a good time to begin spraying Dormant Oil, Oil and Lime Sulfer Spray and/or Fruit Tree Spray. These products kill hibernating insects by suffocating them and inhibit fungal growths. The key is applying them at the right time. If you have any questions about how and when to apply these products, call or stop by and talk to one of the nursery pros.

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