How to plant the right tree in right place

There are a host of reasons why growing and caring for trees is so tricky in our arid climate.

That’s the subject of an upcoming, hands-on workshop that aims to teach both beginner and experienced landowners how to plant and maintain trees on their properties.

“Here in the valley, a lot of the issues relate to planting the wrong tree in the wrong place, or having trees that are not appropriate for the area,” said John Rizza, small acreage management specialist with Colorado State University Extension. 

He said the upcoming outdoor workshop — scheduled Nov. 3 at the Western Colorado Botanical Gardens Amphitheater — is for people planting trees, but also for anyone with woody vegetation on their property “and is wondering, ‘How the heck do I manage this?’ “

CSU Extension and the Mesa Conservation District are sponsoring the workshop, funded by a USDA grant. The day is free, including lunch after a morning of educational sessions.

Participants will learn how to evaluate their properties, maintain healthy trees and identify common tree issues, such as insects and disease. They’ll get planting tips, information about which species are best for the area, and an introduction to the basics of pruning.

“A lot of times, people will improperly prune a tree and then call in a tree surgeon or a tree service. A lot of times, it’s too late by then,” Rizza said. “Proper pruning right from the get-go always saves you money in the long run.”

Noxious weeds — how to identify them and strategies for treatment — are also part of the program.

After the free lunch, people get the choice of either hands-on instruction in proper pruning or assistance in identifying common noxious weeds.

Call the Mesa Conservation District, 242-4511, to sign up. Or register online at http://www.ext., under the Hot Topics tab.

As the Chinese proverb says: “The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The next-best time is now.”

The deadline to sign up is 
Oct. 26.


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