"Growing trees is as much an art as it is a science." - Becky Thomas
"When you plant a tree, you plant a legacy," - Pepper Provanzano
"The creation of a thousand forests is in one acorn." - Ralph Waldo Emerson

Perfection is what we strive for at Spring Grove Nursery. Each tree in our nursery is given care & attention multiple times through their years here in our field. Pruning & staking are parts of the routine growing process that we pay special attention to. Different species require different growing techniques. And each season offers it’s own unique challenges that also affect the timing to our work. Here is a snapshot of what we are doing right now in the nursery:

YEAR 1 – Planting of liners

We just finished getting all of our newly planted trees (or liners as we call them) pruned & ready to grow. Our new liner crop was planted earlier this spring & they will grow on in the field for the next several years. The first initial pruning of the liners is a very important step in the development of the tree.

Our first pruning on liners usually consists of some key actions. We make sure to prune off any damaged or dead branches that occurred from shipping or planting. Next we limb up some of the bottoms branches to get the canopy closer to the height we want from the ground. Next we look at the top & establish a select a leader & adjust the overall height as needed. Then we do the structure work on the lateral branches by thinning out, shortening up, & removing branches as needed.

If the liner pruning is done properly, then the tree is off to a great start for it’s years here in our field. As we move through the blocks & complete the first step of structuring, our crews come behind & do a final touch up to make sure the tree is straight in the ground at the proper height.  Then we just wait for rain & sunshine to do their work & our new trees are ready to start growing!

Liner Pruning in the Nursery

YEARS 2-4 – Pruning & Staking

In our older crops in the field we are removing un-wanted branches, continuing leader work on the tops, un-staking trees & flexing them to build strength and re-staking them as needed. Pruning will continue all season long through multiple years as we prepare our next crops for the future.

Right now in June we just finished going through our Oaks. They were putting on lots of new growth due to the great growing weather this spring so some of them were starting to burst off their stakes. We lightened the tops & re-staked as needed. Similarly we are now going through Elms & Honeylocust. They also are very vigorous on top growth so we need to keep that in check with the caliper of the trunk so that the end result is strong & well balanced. Next we will be moving through some of our older ornamental blocks to do some finishing touches where needed.  We love to watch the trees grow & change through the years!

We welcome you to stop by the nursery for a visit. It’s a great time of year to see the trees we have growing for the future!