Training and weather
It was an early morning drive to Hot Springs for the first talks of the day at the MG training for Garland, Grant, Hot Spring, Montgomery, and Saline County MG training. They had a large class in spite of having hosted the summer Saturday training in Bryant this past summer. These agents really work together to put on the training and they do a great job. Saline was “hosting” today so their president and VP were there along with the agent. They do a take-home test each week to help them review, and it was a long one. Allen went over the questions with them and it was very thorough. There is a whole lot of learning going on here! I left it in the good hands of Jim Robbins who was teaching propagation.
It was 33 degrees when I got up yesterday and it is 38 degrees this morning. While there was no frost in my yard, I saw frost a lot driving south. But then it got up to 67 degrees and by Sunday they are predicting almost 80! The tulip magnolias are in full bloom and I saw tons of daffodils and tulips all along my drive. I took this picture last March 28 and it is just February 17! The forsythia is blooming as well. This is a good example of one that needs to be pruned AFTER bloom, not during. A third of the old canes or possibly even half, need to be thinned out at the soil line. If you will notice, lots of blooms on the top but much more old brown wood with no blooms at the base. Rejuvenation pruning would help correct that. Not sure why they are pruning stems during blooming.
With the mild forecast this weekend, it will be a great weekend to prune plants that need pruning now. Don’t touch the spring bloomers, but if your crape myrtles need it now is the time to be pruning. I am doing a hands-on pruning workshop tomorrow in DeWitt at the community college starting at 9:30. Bring your pruning shears and we will show you the correct way to prune a crape myrtle.