Spring is springing… and already there are pleasurable little tasks do in the garden, in spite of a whole winter’s worth of snow covering everything. Anything in the garden is pleasurable this time of year!
First up for me is pruning the apple tree out front. Early spring is a great time for this task because you can see the structure of the tree’s “bones”. If you miss this window, I’d advise waiting until July-August. If you prune in the budding/leafing stage of growth, you will cause the tree to bleed and weaken it’s new efforts to put on a good bit of growth.
The deep snow is really softening and if you go out later in the day, you will be up to your ying-ying in snow. However, if you get out earlier in the day, the snow will likely be frozen enough to walk on it.
Here’s a really good link to a blog I follow. No point in me reinventing the wheel, so to speak. http://awaytogarden.com/garden-faq/pruning-faqs/ Great diagram on where and how and why to make the cuts. Follow carefully.
To see the benefits, and harm, that can be caused by proper and improper pruning, next time you’re out for a walk, note the trees that are healthy… the pruned limbs will show a healthy Callus (scab). The unhealthy trees will have stubs and peeling bark and all manner of illness. They are firewood! When the tree can’t form a scab over its wound, it is just like us… infection sets in… and you know “the rest to the story”.
Enjoy the season… get outside!