New Workshops for 2016 – Fraser Valley Continuing Education

Espalier Training of Fruit Trees

Wednesday February 24 – 7:00 pm – 9:30 pm Credo Christian High, LANGLEY

During this workshop, Tree Fruit Expert and Espalier Master, Richard Hallman, will teach you about espalier;  the ancient horticultural practice of controlling woody plant growth for the production of fruit for ornamental effect. Espalier is living art that developed long before the science of plant growth was understood. Dozens of espalier forms and how to create them will be discussed including the classic two dimensional forms and several three dimensional forms. You will learn how to start new espalier fruit trees, how to renew and maintain existing trees and what types of fruit trees are best for beginners and those that are more challenging. Rootstocks, training techniques, summer pruning and support systems will all be included. You can contact the instructor by e-mail at richard@richardhallman.ca

For more information and to register click here:FV Continuing Education

Dormant Organic Fruit Tree Insect & Disease Control

Wednesday March 9 – 7:00 pm – 9:30 pm        Credo Christian High, LANGLEY

During this workshop, Tree Fruit Expert Richard Hallman, will teach you about the insects and diseases that attack fruit trees in the Fraser Valley and organic ways to control them. You will learn how to identify and monitor for them, how to determine if they will cause significant damage to your fruit, their life cycles and the times during the spring and summer when they usually become a problem. How to tell the good insects (predators) from the bad guys and how to encourage the good guys will be included. Many organic methods of control that can be used during the spring and summer will be discussed. Many of the materials and tools that you can use to monitor for these insects and diseases and protect your trees and fruit will be displayed and demonstrated in the classroom.

For more information and to register click here:FV Continuing Education

New Fruit Tree Workshops at UBC

Container Growing of Espalier Fruit Trees on Your Deck

Saturday April 25 2015, 10:00 am – 3:00pm
UBC Botanical Garden
Cost: $55.25 members, UBC students & UNA; $65.00 public

Learn how to grow tree fruits in containers, and to turn trees into creative espalier designs for your deck or backyard.

Tree Fruit Organic Pest Control

Saturday May 2 2015, 10:00 am – 12:30 pm
UBC Botanical Garden, Reception Centre
Cost: $29.74 members, UBC students & UNA; $35.00 public

Having pest or disease troubles with your fruit trees? Learn tips and tricks to manage your trees the organic way.

Espalier Tree Fruit Spring Training and Blossom Thinning

Saturday May 2 2015, 1:30 pm – 4:00 pm
UBC Botanical Garden, Reception Centre
Cost: $29.74 members, UBC students & UNA; $35.00 public

Pinch, nick and notch? Gain hands-on training of how to espalier apple and pear trees when trees in your garden as they develop new shoots, blossoms and small fruit.

Apple & Pear Fruit Thinning and Bagging

Saturday June 6 2015, 10:00 am – 12:30 pm
UBC Botanical Garden
Cost: $29.74 members, UBC students & UNA; $35.00 public

Interested in increasing the fruit size of your fruit trees? Learn tips and tricks for thinning and managing fruit loads.

Espalier Summer Pruning and Tree Training

Saturday June 6, 2015, 1:30 pm – 4:00 pm
UBC Botanical Garden, Reception Centre
Cost: $29.74 members, UBC students & UNA; $35 public

Explore tips and tricks for pruning and training your trees to grow decorative plants suitable for small spaces.

Summer Grafting of Tree Fruits

Saturday August 15, 2015, 10:00 am – 12:30 pm
UBC Botanical Garden, Reception Centre
Cost: $29.74 members, UBC students, UNA; $35.00 public

Imagine grafting and pruning your fruit trees during the long days of summer. Gain hands-on skills in grafting and budding.

Late Summer Pruning of Espalier and Other Fruit Trees

Saturday August 15, 2015, 1:00 pm – 4:00 pm
UBC Botanical Garden, Reception Centre
Cost: $29.74 members, UBC students, UNA; $35.00 public

Explore late summer tips and tricks for pruning and training your trees to grow decorative plants suitable for small spaces.

Fall Fruit Tree Pest & Disease Control

Saturday September 26, 2015, 1:30 pm – 4:00 pm
UBC Botanical Garden, Reception Centre
Cost: $29.74 members, UBC students, UNA; $35.00 public

Learn how to identify insects and diseases that damage local trees. Walk away with practical tips and skills to manage your fruit trees the organic way.

Click here to visit the UBC Botanical Garden website and register. 

Lee Valley Tools Workshops/Seminars

I will be instructing the following workshops at the Coquitlam Lee Valley Tools in 2014. Please check their online course listings and registration mid November.

  • Pruning and Training Fruit Trees, Nuts and Berries
  • Espalier Training of Trees and Shrubs
  • Tree and Shrub Shaping
  • Grafting and Air layering Trees
  • Tapping West Coast Maple and Birch Trees for Syrup
  • Vegetable Grafting

Your suggestions of other courses you would like to take are very welcome.

Stewart Farm Heriatage Orchard Summer Pruning 2

This post is a closer look at the summer pruning cuts to reduce the vigor of the espalier tree at the Stewart Heritage Orchard. The first picture is the branches before cutting

and the second after cutting to 5 leaves. The response to this treatment needs to be monitored and next steps planned for the late dormant period.

Stewart Farm Heriatage Orchard Summer Pruning 1

Two days ago I was doing some summer pruning at the Stewart Heritage Orchard where I am a volunteer focused on orchard management. Summer pruning of apples to manage the growth of the trees and produce more fruiting spurs is usually done in mid  to late July, so this is an ideal time for this type of work.

The variety of this tree is Ahmead’s Kernal, an old variety identified in 1720 in England. All apple trees need to be pruned and trained in a way that will maintain a balance between the production of vegetative and fruiting branches.  Since espalier training restricts the trees to two dimensions and a small space, maintaining this balance is even more important. This particular espalier was heavily pruned last winter resulting in a large number of vegetative shoots. To rebalance this vertical shoots more than 10″ in length were cut to about 5 leaves not counting the basal whorl of leaves. This will reduce the vigor the heavy winter pruning created, a first step toward restoring the vegetative/fruiting balance.