The air may still be cold and branches bare, but that doesn’t mean activity stops at the OPPD Arboretum in winter.
Maintaining the facility at 108th and Blondo streets is a year-round job. Specific winter chores ensure the arboretum plantings are healthy when spring comes. Those tasks include:
Attaching tree guards to younger trees with thinner bark to protect them from deer rubbing against them and to help prevent damage from rodents and rabbits.
Adding approximately 35 truckloads of mulch chips to replenish the trails that get heavy use in the warmer months. The chips are also used to replenish the mulch rings around trees and larger mulch beds.
Removing invasive tree species such as buckthorn, which tend to spread throughout the timber and shrub lines.
Tree pruning maintenance. Since the leaves are off the trees, workers can see the main structure of tree. This makes it easier to target dead wood and branches with poor attachments. Even in your own yard, the dormant season is the best time to make proper pruning cuts on a tree.
Just because it’s winter doesn’t mean the arboretum isn’t filled with beautiful scenery.
Check out this photo gallery of sights you can see during a winter stroll along the arboretum’s walking trails.
Laura King-Homan is the managing editor of The Wire and a communications specialist at the Omaha Public Power District. She has nearly 20 years of print journalism and design experience, including the Omaha World-Herald.