This week Joe discusses a topic he is passionate about: proper pruning. For many, pruning is simply another part of gardening, but for others it can cause a cold sweat more commonly described as prune-a-phobia.
Joe visits with Tracy DiSabato-Aust, author of “The Well-Tended Perennial Garden” considered by many to be the bible of perennial maintenance. Pruning is such a variable topic with many attributes to be taken into consideration such as climate, species, and goals of the gardener.
Pruning can induce or delay flowering, eliminate the need for staking, control disease, improve appearance but what, when and how is a large factor. Tracy takes some of the mystery out of pruning with easy tips and great advice.
But many times pruning is done for the wrong reasons. Design coach, Billy Goodnick, discusses what he considers to be ‘crimes against horticulture’ in the landscape. So often, when we don’t put the right plant in the right place we try to force it to conform, which can have environmental consequences. All plants have a genetic disposition as to height and width and it is crucial for the gardener to research the plant to see how tall and wide it will ultimately grow and whether it is suited to the desired location. And, severe shaping may be aesthetically pleasing to some but can eventually shorten a plant’s lifespan.
But what about trees that are mutilated for no apparent reason? There are many who have been convinced by unscrupulous landscapers that trees pose a danger if allowed to reach their ultimate size. Nothing could be farther from the truth as Joe explains. Trees that are routinely topped pose more of a threat than those left to their own genetic destiny.
Patti shows viewers how to properly espalier a dwarf apple tree safely for high yield in a small space and Chef Nathan makes a delicious dessert from the fruit of apricot trees.
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