Once the trees and shrubs, the bones of a garden, are taken care of we can turn our attention to the flower and vegetable beds. Calgary's soils deserve some discussion.
My Tree Care Philosophy
Trees are living beings and deserve respect. There is a lot of work done on trees that is not in their best interest. Routine practices performed from habit that ignore the tree's present state can be very injurious. An example would be standard thinning and shaping performed on a tree that is infected with a disease.
Trees get all their energy from the sun, mostly through their leaves or needles. The rest comes from photosynthetic tissue in young bark. Too much pruning not only stresses a tree, but forces it to generate suckers or shoots to try to replenish the lost leaf mass. There is a delicate balance among the leaves, branches, trunk and roots. Suckers are an indicator of too much pruning and top die-back can signal root damage.
When inspecting a tree, knowing how it compares to others of the same species is essential for understanding how the individual is doing. Experience counts: the more trees you have seen, the better. Being able to see clearly and access carefully is the greatest gift I can bring to a tree. Once we see clearly, knowing what to do is easy.