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Ozarks Tree pruning workshops offer helpful advice from forestry pro’s

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Pruning a tree can often improve its shape and perhaps save damage later, but only if done properly. You can learn how are one of four workshops being offered in the Ozarks by the Missouri Department of Conservation in November.

Winter is the prime time to prune trees for several reasons. Harmful fungus, bacteria and insect pests are less likely to infect a pruning wound during a tree’s winter dormancy stage. For homeowners and landowners, getting helpful advice from Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) staff and local forestry professionals at planned workshops in Greenfield, Joplin, El Dorado Springs and Sheldon.

Nov. 14: 6:30 p.m. in Greenfield at the Greenfield Community Building, corner of Toney Ave. and Park St.

Nov. 18: 9 a.m., in Joplin at Cunningham Park shelter near main parking lot off Maiden Lane. This workshop is hosted by the Missouri Community Forestry Council and will offer hands-on pruning opportunities. This will allow individuals to practice their new skills by pruning trees at the park.

Nov. 27: 6:30 p.m., in Joplin at Wildcat Glades Conservation and Audubon Center, 201 Riviera Drive.

Nov. 28: 6:30 p.m. in El Dorado Springs at the MDC El Dorado Springs Office, 1109 S. Main St.

Dec. 9, 10 a.m. in Sheldon at the City Park Community Building, 6th Ave. and Main St. This workshop is hosted by the Sheldon Community Betterment Association. After the instructional portion of the workshop, participants will be invited to join Association members and city staff in pruning the younger trees in the park.

Registration is requested, but not required for all these workshops. For more information, call the MDC office in Joplin at 417-629-3423 or e-mail MDC Community Forester Jon Skinner at jon.skinner@mdc.mo.gov. For more on backyard tree care, go online to https://mdc.mo.gov/tree-health.

George Freeman is a veteran journalist and photographer. An award-winning writer, editor and columnist in Springfield, Mo., with more than 50 years experience. His preference is for positive and uplifting stories about people, places, traditions and trends that make the Ozarks one of the most livable regions anywhere. A member of the Garden Writers Association of America, he is a past-president of the Society of Professional Journalists of Southwest Missouri, the Kansas and Ohio AP societies; a board member of Friends of the Garden and a member of the Rotary Club of Springfield. In 1976, he traveled to India as a member of a Rotary Foundation Group Study Exchange Team.

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