Category: Uncategorized

How Much Should I Cut?

Posted by shane - December 3, 2018 - Uncategorized

There are two rules of thumbs I live by in my pruning work: less is more, and, do what’s needed.  Sometimes a lot of pruning is required, but doing less would not achieve the required result.  I teach my staff that they should prune with accountability in mind.  That is, every cut they make should […]

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Ladders

Posted by shane - December 3, 2018 - Uncategorized

You can tell whether or not you’re dealing with a serious ornamental pruners by the selection of ladders on their truck.  I have several types of ladders in my arsenal: several orchard ladders, two extension ladders, a pair of sawhorses, and the “secret weapon,” which is a 2” tall platform ladder.  Orchard Ladders You can […]

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What Tools Do I Use?

Posted by shane - December 3, 2018 - Uncategorized

If you want to make the best cuts, it’s important to have quality tools.  This doesn’t mean that you have to spend a fortune, but a few extra dollars spent on excellent pruning tools will not only make your work easier, more enjoyable, and more attractive, but you’ll make cleaner cuts, which benefits the plants […]

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Weigela

Posted by shane - September 2, 2018 - Uncategorized

Weigela florida Some varieties of weigela are marginally hardy in central Alberta, and it is uncommon in the landscape.  On the rare occasion when I do see a specimen in a client’s yard, it usually looks pretty dismal. I trialled a couple different varieties the past couple years, and my favourite is ‘Red Prince’.  It […]

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Hiring an Arborist – Expectations

Posted by shane - January 16, 2018 - Uncategorized

We all look at trees differently whether we realize it or not. One of the most challenging things to do for a customer is to paint a picture in their minds of what a tree will look like after it is pruned, or many years after. The best relationships I have with customers involve trust. […]

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Soil Problems in New Neighbourhoods

Posted by shane - March 3, 2017 - Uncategorized

Soil is probably the most overlooked part of the landscaping process, and likely results in the majority of plant death, or at least lack of vigour.  In my 1950’s neighbourhood I was lucky to inherit about 24” of good black dirt in both my front and back yard.  There isn’t a Prairie hardy plant I […]

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Serviceberry

Posted by shane - January 13, 2017 - Uncategorized

Amelanchier ‘Autumn Brilliance’ Amelanchier ‘Robin Hill’ I really like serviceberry, because it’s basically just a single-stem, saskatoon tree.  Unfortunately, I don’t think it is 100% right for our region, even though it technically is hardy and gets through the winter.  It basically just sits there all season, flowers well, leafs out, barely grows (maybe 1″ […]

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Sea Buckthorn

Posted by shane - January 11, 2017 - Uncategorized

Hippophae rhamnoides & cvs. Sea buckthorn is a very common and well-respected plant in the eastern part of the world, where it’s used to produce around 200 different products.  The berries are high in Vitamin C and other nutrients.  In the West, it is largely unknown, except to horticulturists, a few specialty berry growers, and […]

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Wolf Willow

Posted by shane - February 1, 2016 - A-Z Plant Maintenance, Shrubs, Uncategorized

Eleagnus commutata Native to Alberta, wolf willow is a common site in natural areas such as streambanks, dry slopes, and open fields.  It is aggressive and often invasive, and I would not recommend planting this shrub in an ornamental setting.  It looks best in its native environment, on acreages, and in large, park-like settings.  It […]

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Is My Pine or Spruce Tree OK?

Posted by shane - October 3, 2010 - Uncategorized

Starting in late summer, many homeowners begin to see the interior needles of their pines, spruces, and cedars turning yellow or orange.  This is normal.  Needles only live for a few years (depending on species) and then die back during fall.  It is common for people to think that something is wrong with their trees. […]

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