Monday, March 2, 2009

Pruning with Jay

This last Saturday found us gathering in the slightly chilly "Green Room" for another informative class, this time on pruning. Jay Davison, our Area Soil specialist with the UNR Co-operative Extension office was on hand for the 8th year in a row to teach us the ins and outs of pruning just about everything. We covered fruit trees, shade trees, hedges, name it. After an hour inside, we headed out front to do some pruning on the flowering crabapple 'Florabunda' that is by the front door of the gift shop. He started in, and I cringed a little at the the thought of loosing all those beautiful buds that would be opening in the next month. I gathered up branches and passed them to all that wanted to take some home to force inside the house and enjoy now. Jay finally "felt my pain" though and stopped the actually pruning, and showed me where to do the cuts after it blooms. So, you will see me out there sometime in late April taking care of the rest of the pruning that this particular beauty needs.
It was out back to the display garden next to take a look at the old apple tree that he has been working on for the last 7 years or so. A little bit each year, he takes some branches off and checks to see for the overall health of his old tree. This year he found a bug infestation of scale that was never there before, so the dormant oil, an organic way to control the bugs, will be coming out of the storage room and the tree will get a good soaking this week.

After the class was over, it was on to the worm bin to open it up and check on it's progress. There are what seems to me to be thousands and thousands of worms tucked under the lid. I can't wait for Darren Murphy, from Sierra Worm Solutions to come back out in the early summer to help us harvest our first crop of castings. He is the one that installed the system for us and is the local "go to" guy for all worm related things in this area. We will be having another seminar with him soon, so watch your emails for updates.The day turned out to be a beautiful one. Slightly cool, but the sun was shining and no big winds to speak of. Bob was busy on the forklift most of the day putting away all the trees we just got in. It looks so great to see the nursery filling up with all the promise of spring.

See you soon, Susan

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