Yesterday was St. Patricks Day, the traditional day to sow peas. With the snow still on the ground I didn't get to do that. Not that I usually sow on that day. Before and mostly after. This year it is probably going to happen in April. But I did get out earlier this week. I did some pruning, which probably should have been done a month ago. But the snowbanks were too high to get to the trees.
I keep my peach trees small. Winter pruning encourages the trees to put out more growth. Summer pruning doesn't do that. So most of my pruning is done in the summer. In addition it is easier to control how the tree is growing if you prune it in the summer. So that is my preference. This time I took off any crossing branches. Any branches that were growing up. And any that were underneath and small and weak. Hopefully it will produce well this summer. But who knows what the spring and blossoming time will bring.
I also pruned my pear and apple trees that are espaliered along the rock wall. I only took the tops off of them to encourage them to branch at the appropriate spot. I think it will take another year and a half for the main structures of the trees to finish taking shape. Though it will probably be mostly done by this year. They will have four tiers of side branches and each year I seem to be able to get one tier done.
I didn't get to the two apple trees in the back. The snow is still too deep out there for me to want to walk on it. I'm a bit sad about my Ginger Gold tree. The bottom branches were totally taken down by the snow. Not broken, but now they are at a parallel angle to the tree which isn't good. The melting snow just grabbed them and slowly pulled them down. I might have to cut them off. It isn't the end of the world. I was thinking they might be too low to the ground anyway. But it will be sad to lose the biggest branches. Though I suppose it will encourage the tree to grow its other branches out more.
I also started to prune the nasty thorny rose bush by the driveway. At least until I found this.
And then this.
And finally a third. All of these preying mantis egg sacks are at the top of the rose. The rose had lots of snow piled on it and I was going to cut it way back because half of the branches were broken. Well I can't cut off those tall ones with the egg sacks. I'm thinking of cutting all the branches down except the ones with the egg sacks. But will that leave the little mantids vulnerable to predation when they are young? I'm not sure. Maybe I should cut them off and spread them around the yard in some bushes? Anyone else every had this issue?