Monday, February 4, 2008

Pruning, shaping, and cleaning up perennials

What a weekend! It was as beautiful as any day in April. I spent lots of time with the bees and chickens, but more on that later. This post is about cleaning up the ornamental beds and fruit trees. Two pictures here show how an apple tree was shaped by this season's pruning, and how small bars with points on the ends were used to help spread branches to improve their angle to the main leader. Different length spreaders were used for different sized branches. The third photo shows one of 3 piles of debris remaining after I cleaned up the dead twigs and branches from some of my ornamental perennials. You are looking at branches of gaura (whirling butterfly) and of spirea. The white gaura was huge this past year; I am going to have to take out two of the three plants and find a new location for them. The red guara however, did poorly, I do not know why. Now, to avoid disappointment later when the temperatures plummet again, I have to keep telling myself: "It is not spring. It is not spring. It is not spring."