Learn abut the benefits of pruning fruit trees

Find out how to get the most benefit from your fruit trees in fall by pruning them the right way this winter.

Join Clallam County Master Gardeners, from left, Keith Dekker, Tom Del Hotal and Gordon Clark for a free fruit tree pruning workshop set for 10 a.m.-noon on Saturday, March 2, at the Woodcock Demonstration Garden, 2711 Woodcock Road in Sequim.

Pruning your fruit trees the right way can make them healthier, more productive and more accessible at harvest time, local gardening experts note.

Since not all fruit trees should be pruned in the same way, Clark, Dekker and Del Hotal will talk about the differences and demonstrate several pruning techniques as well as the proper tools required to do the job.

They will also discuss the types of trimming needed for fruit tree strength, structure, shape and flower production.

Dekker has focused the last 32 years of his career on the comprehensive care of residential landscapes in the Pacific Northwest. As a Clallam County Master Gardener and active volunteer with PlantAmnesty, he contributes to his community by teaching classes and giving talks to promote best practices for successful, sustainable gardening.

Del Hotal has been a horticulturist and nurseryman since 1977. He is a certified arborist and was a horticulture instructor at a local college in San Diego for more than 20 years. He owned his part-time business, Fantasia Gardens — a fruit tree specialty nursery and fruit tree pruning and consulting business that specialized in home and small-scale commercial orchard design and fruit tree management services — from 1983-2020. He is currently a Clallam County Master Gardner.

Clark owns and operates Clark Horticultural, an organic landscape maintenance business which specializes in ornamental pruning. He successfully completed the environmental horticulture program at Lake Washington Institute of Technology, has been a WSNLA Certified Professional Horticulturist for more than 20 years, is an ISA-certified arborist for 19 years, and a Master Gardener for three years. He has presented many pruning lectures and demonstrations for the Master Gardeners and other organizations.

For more information on this workshop and other Master Gardener events, visit extension.wsu.edu/clallam/mg. Or, call 360-565-2678.