One never stops learning. Over the two weekends J.J. and I stayed with my Mother, I learned how to prune pine trees. She has a total of 6 large pine trees and they have been cultivated and cared by Japanese garden specialists in the style of classic Japanese pine trees. This year, her garden specialist had been unavailable due to health issues and while she is looking for a substitute to take care of pruning her pine trees, I volunteered to help out.
As a start, I borrowed my sister’s Japanese pruning shears and a brand new pair of garden gloves. My Mother gave me a set of instructions, but primarily I set out to remove pine cone flowers. I had no idea that there are female and male pine trees. She even has trees with both female and male flowers.
Female cones are what I have seen on forest floors. They are woody “cone” that can be as small as a size of your little finger and as big as one to two feet long.
Spring is the best time for pruning but you also have to deal with pollen. Even wearing a baseball cap, my hair was covered with yellow pollen and sticky pine sap.
My Mother and I went out to her garden every other day and stayed out for as long as 2 hours. It was enjoyable to be outdoor, listened to her stories, sipped tea and admire her spring flowers.
Aloha -- Cathi