Yesterday I went to take some pictures of Dave pruning. Because Dave prunes, every. single. day of the winter and well into spring, so I figured I should at least document it here.
Turns out I am not so good at getting pruning pictures when the sun is coming over the mountain in full glory. Instead, I took about 53 pictures of our barn with the sun hitting it.
I also took about 28 pictures of Pippin. She is growing into such a good girl. We really enjoy her, and she is morphing from “Missy’s dog” to “Dave’s dog” with each passing day that she gets to hang out with him in the trees. Unfortunately, due to general bottling burn-out and laziness, I don’t ski near as much with her as I planned,….or think I will “someday”.
I read a quote the other day, from Buddha, saying “The trouble is, you think you have time.”
I better get those skis on.
I did get a few pictures of Dave pruning. These are high-density Ambrosia trees, whose apples will be destined primarily for the fresh market.
I haven’t been able to find much use for Ambrosia in the cidery, so despite most of the orchard industry here pushing towards expensive replants of that variety, we still have lots of big old Spartan and Mac trees…while labour intensive and not overly profitable, those apples do have better acidity for cider, and for that we are thankful we still have so many.
That said, we are also glad we have Ambrosia, as they are a delicious eating apple, and need to be grown big to at least cover costs, let alone make a living. Pruning helps to ensure that fruit will grow to a marketable size, and that unruly branches will not shade the apples or suck vigour from the tree. Once many of the branches and spurs are removed, the tree can put it’s energy into growing big, colourful apples – or that is the hope anyhow.
Hopefully one day soon I will get my camera out for a proper pruning photoshoot….but for now, sunny, snowladen branches will have to do to give you a feeling for the orchard in winter.