Spring Weeding and Compost/Mulch Application
With the wet weather and warming temperatures, early season weeds are growing rapidly. Time to get out there and begin editing the plant palette! POP's weed identification guide is available for sale on our website and we always have free copies to distribute to community orchard partners.
Building healthy soil is key to supporting trees’ health, resilience and yields. Weed around the base of trees, and spread at least one or two inches of chipped winter prunings, shredded leaves, and/or mulch or compost in the early spring. Check out POP’s guide to Ramial Wood Chips and Weeding in Place.
Fireblight Removal and Emergency Pruning
With dormant season well behind us, most pruning should be limited to emergency pruning only.
Keep an eye out for any diseased, damaged, or dead wood that should be pruned away no matter the season. Pay special attention to the base of trees - especially of the stone fruit varieties: apricots, peaches, plums, nectarines - and prune away root suckers, the quick upright growth that can be a cover for dreaded borers, which make a home beneath trunk wood.
Keep an eye out for fire blight damage on apples and pears in May. Be sure to prune back to healthy wood at least 8 to 12" below signs of damage to prevent further spread of this disease.