Happy March folks!
Welcome are the longer days, the squishy ground underfoot, the dank, deep smell of impending bud-set, and OH! Speaking of bud-set, welcome are the days when we start thinking about caring for the health & future of our trees!
And who better than to do it with than our good friends from LuRC (The League of Urban Canners!) at our Second Fruit Tree Pruning Workshop in Central Square in Cambridge, MA. We were fortune to have a clear day, a lovely homeowner and a pack of enthusiastic and interested LuRCers, looking to develop some awesome (and necessary) pruning skills to keep Cambridge and Somerville’s fruit trees healthy, blooming and fruiting!
H e r e a r e s o m e s h o t s f r o m t h e d a y !
Thanks to the 16ft bike trailer from the awesome people at Bikes at Work, we don’t need a stinking truck. 🙂 And neither did the LUrCers also arrived on-site with bikes & backpacks and peniers full of pruning saws and hand tools! (I’ve made note of this fact before and I’m proud to say it again: These folks harvested over 4THOUSAND lbs of urban fruit last fall in Cambridge & Somerville alone without using a single BTU to do so!) Goooo BIKES! We were pumped & excited to get started on the day.
First thing’s first when it comes to pruning: Site assessment. Looks as if one of our front yard apple trees is making some unwanted advances towards it’s neighbor.
Ned and the group point out potential limbs to be pruned. Reasons include but are not limited to death, decay, infection, superfluous or crossing limbs, energy restoration & overall aesthetic.
We noted signs of rot, damage from plows and garbage trucks, cankers and open wounds due to rubbing branches. We also found some new and lovely watershoots which we will work with in the future AND we spotted the sweet hints of impending flower buds!
A severe canker spot.
Seemingly Nefarious Ned going over the rules of thumb in regards to pruning tools, safety and proper tool maintenance (and looks damn going doing so!)
Sharp as nails. Ned demonstrates the proper way to hold and cut with a pruning saw.
…And time for the fabulous LuRCers to to take a stab at it!
Like all good things in life, angle is key.
You can never be too young to start caring about the health, longevity and care of your local trees.
It was, of coure, another fabulous day of laughing, talking, learning, teaching, networking, sharing, and just really enjoying the company of all the LURCers! By the end of the session, nearly everyone was able to try their hand at a cut (not to be confused with cut on a hand) and they walked away more confident in their ability to properly prune fruit trees! YeeHOO!
As Ned and I headed back to Porter Square, jonezing for that nice hot cup-o-joe, we discussed how excited we were to work with such a COOL group of people who are sincerely and actively interested in sustainability and about how lucky we are to work in a field in which most people share that common and very real goal. So thank you LUrC for this opportunity for us to share our knowledge with you, to learn more about your goals for this coming season and for some of the most delicious homemade apple sauce and apricot jam we’ve ever had! MM.
Also, If anyone out there in the Boston/Somerville/Cambridge area is looking to have their trees/shrubs tended to, we are happily for hire! OR if you are looking to learn a useful new skill, we would be thrilled to give pruning lessons either one-on-one or in groups.
XO and so excited for spring!
Shoot us an email: firstname.lastname@example.org.