Minneapolis

Bonnie Blodgett: Prune, shear, prod, appreciate

2021-04-17 09:58:15 –

Did you break the record high heat record a week ago or two weeks ago? Since then, it has been raining a lot and it is approaching below freezing.

Bonnie Brodget

Rain is welcome, but I’m worried about the cold. How can I prevent fragile shoots, swollen leaves and flower buds from quivering like I do?

In that regard, why is it okay for my baby chick, less than two months old, to live in a loft above the garage with a 100 watt light bulb without heat?

Young’uns have been moving a lot lately. First I moved from my kitchen to an outdoor orchid attached to the chicken coop, then to the ground floor of the garage, and just a few days ago to the loft on the second floor. I needed a place to stay while my friend was looking for a house, so I’ve been banking with me ever since my friend moved his family to a big house.

I said yes during the warm spell I mentioned earlier.

It was difficult to adapt to temperatures just below freezing, but it was also refreshing.

As long as you have a heating pad between your toes and a dog that is loyal to your back, winter camps will be fun.

Moreover, whether it feels like it or not … Spring is here and the plants don’t care what the temperature is.

What’s on the to-do list?

Well, everything. In descending order of importance …

Pruning must be one of the tasks. This is a window of opportunity (but closes soon) to cut out dead trees and improve the shape of trees and shrubs that have just emerged from dormancy.

Mowing crochet protects them from heavy snowfall that can damage the branches. It’s time for them to grow anew. Do not cut into dead trees. Otherwise, pruning what the new growth comes from.

Similarly, pine and spruce. These produce a cluster of needles called candles that can be cut back or completely removed to keep the plant in size.

Putting so-called dwarfs, such as Blue Globe Spruce, under control often means removing the candle before it is fully formed. Again, if you cut too deeply, you’ll have ugly bald areas that won’t heal.

Of course, I learned this in a difficult way.

A few years ago, I planted three blue-earth spruce at regular intervals along the retaining wall in the vestibule.

Fast forward for 10 years. “Dwarf” has transformed into an adolescent youth.

I did because pruning at this point was to slaughter them.

As a result, they have long lost orderly uniformity. Instead, with my encouragement, they developed a horizontal branching habit that fits well with that of Japanese larch along the same wall.

At least I think so.

Needless to say, conifers claimed as dwarfs can only deceive you for that long.

My new shape of the blue earth spruce shines more light on all the needles and tells me that the shrubs will prevent innocent passers-by from the sidewalks into the streets.

The harsh cold of February made me worried about all the trees I planted and replanted last fall.

I refer to 12 feet high Linden and Elm, Japanese Katsura and PeeGee Hydrangea.

I haven’t mentioned the three columnar eastern white pine trees I dug. It turned out to be about one-third the size needed to accommodate the giant rootball of a tree that a wise driver saw what I did and refused to deliver. Owned a bobcat Is not …

Later I made a lot of apologies (my, not him), I said I would start over in the spring.

So, on a seemingly summery day in early April, I drove to Buckman’s wholesale nursery in Farmington and tried to create an instant privacy screen along the west side of the backyard, where utility poles were approaching.

Joel, the head-tree man, set aside a small version of the eastern white pine that Bobcat needed to plant.

The pine was perfect, but still too big for my trailer. Instead, I chose three fully formed columnar DeGroot arborvitaes.

Joel agreed that these are better choices (will grow under the old bar oak) given that DeGroots will be a bit shaded. It is also advisable to start small plants so that they can adapt to what they are waiting for.

All this activity not only keeps me warm in cold, rainy weather, but also at my favorite time, surrounded by old companions who were positive that I would never come back (as usual). Keeped me in my favorite place in the world.

It’s great to see hosta sticking out the roots of the leaves as if they were new. The Virginia Bluebell, planted by my grandmother decades ago, is beginning to show flower buds with bright pale green lumps at ankle height.

Tulips and daffodils are rising. But of all the spring bulbs, the best of this spring is not in my garden, but across the street.

They are Schiller, also known as Sibericalis. They belong to my neighbor and their front yard looks like a lake in the north. That blue. Thanks to Schiller’s blue.

The woman who planted them died in winter. The new owner of her house and garden wanted a proper lawn.

Sadly for them, even plowing the ground and starting the lawn with seeds instead of the lawn couldn’t get rid of Schiller.

The garden is still blue, and the lawn is a small wreckage of what was once lush.

I don’t know if I feel sorry for the wasted effort of the new owner or if I’m pleased with this amazing display of natural elasticity like a planted woman. She was a dear friend.

I think both are okay.

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