Twenty-two people came out on a cold Saturday morning to be part of the Baltimore TreeKeepers and Old Goucher Community Assn.'s Young Tree Pruning Workshop 4. A good time was had by all we learned and worked on pruning young trees growing in Calvert Park at Calvert Street and 23rd Street. We had four arborists on hand to guide the teams: Amanda Cunningham, director of programs for the Tree Trust, Gary Letteron of City Forestry Department, and two great arborist volunteers: Randy Fackler and Bobby Saylor. will lead the outdoor workshop, teaching the basics of pruning and how to create the optimum structure for young street and park trees. Kris Northrup, head of the Old Goucher Tree Committee, revealed a natural talent for pruning, as did other neighbors who are working towards certification as Tree Pruning Experts.
This was another opportunity for those who have attended TreeKeepers' Pruning Classes (including the recent ones) to further sharpen skills on actual city trees.
"Pruning is both a science, but it also has a lot of art in it," as City Arborist Gary Letteron said in the fall class. He is shown below left with a slide showing the correct ways to make lateral cuts. To the right, a slide shows the five main reasons for pruning branches: they are dead, dying, diseased, damaged, or deformed.
A major point: Never remove more than 25 percent of a tree's leaves and canopy as that deprives the tree of too many of the nutrients it needs to recover from this surgery on its limbs.
Master Arborist Chad Vrany of Bartlett Tree Experts took over, (see below, left), demonstrating how to apply all these principles to an actual tree. He encouraged circling the whole tree first, making sure the trunk flare is properly exposed, and then figuring out from the top down which branches need to be removed or trimmed to encourage good growth for that particular species.
Then the class broke up into small groups and everyone went to the allee of tulip poplars and by the end of the class, 32 trees had been pruned.
Here’s what folks who took TreeKeepers are saying:
“That was a great class this past Saturday. Speakers were great, session was informational and educational. I learned a lot!”
“Wow, the information today in Treekeepers 202 was great. I did not realize how much went into proper pruning techniques. Today's class and supervised hands on examples really motivated me to continue to hone the base set of techniques I learned today. Thank you!”
“I had a wonderful time working with you all! Thank you for the opportunity to present and be part of Tree Keepers.”