By Katie Lautar & Molly McCullagh
This time of year, Baltimore gardeners excitedly place their seed orders and anxiously wait for the chilly weather to break before they put lettuce and spinach seeds in the ground. But while we wait for warmer days, there are some plants that need our attention – our fruit trees.
Understanding how and when to trim your fruit trees can make all the difference in how they produce fruit for you.We recommend that gardeners get training before pruning any tree, and especially a fruit tree. This winter, leaders from The Remington Village Green and The Duncan Street Miracle Garden hosted experts from the Baltimore Orchard Projects to practice how to care for their fruit trees and bushes. During the workshops, we learned the basics of tree growth, the essential tools for pruning, and we practiced removing dead branches from trees by cutting out competing or dead branches. Members of other gardens preserved by Baltimore Green Space also joined in, and despite the rain on one of the days, everyone had fun and left feeling empowered to prune their own tree.
Special thanks to the University of Marlyand Extension Master Gardeners, TreeKeepers, and The Friends of Patterson Park for assisting us. The Baltimore Orchard Project taught us so much – more than we could share in just one article. Check out their events calendar and sign up for one of their classes to learn more!