We usually start pruning the first or second week of February, but we started about two weeks later this year due to cold, snowy weather throughout February and into early March.
Prior to February, the weather was mild with very little precipitation. I was concerned about a potential early bud break and set up the crew to begin pruning the first week of February. The day we were to begin work, temperatures dropped into the single digits and it began snowing − much too cold for the crew to work. These conditions lasted through much of February and though the weather wasn’t ideal, we began pruning in mid-February, with over a foot of snow on the ground. Last week, the weather finally made a dramatic change, and daytime temperatures were in the 50’s.
Pruning is progressing well. The crew is doing excellent work, and we hope to be complete with this by mid-April. Most of last year’s crew is back again this year, a real plus for the 2019 growing season.
Despite the challenges, the snowy weather has made for some beautiful scenery across the Royal Slope and Saddle Mountains. Enjoy the view!