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Hands-On Neighborhood Tree-Pruning & Mulching Workshop

September 2, 2017 @ 8:00 am - 12:00 pm

Volunteer crew after doing an incredible job of pruning to regain access to public footpaths that had been blocked by previously unpruned overgrowth. Prunings were then chipped into water-conserving, soil-building mulch.

DATE: Saturday, September 2, 2017


MEETING LOCATION: Dunbar/Spring Community Garden/Orchard space (NW corner of 11th Ave and University Blvd)

WHO’S INVITED: EVERYONE, no matter what neighborhood you live in

WHAT TO BRING: Hat, work gloves, water bottle, and pruning tools if you have them (we will also have some tools for those without)




After a pruning demonstration by a local certified arborist, we will then move to various parts of the neighborhood to get hands-on experience as we prune native and domesticated food-bearing trees in our neighborhood’s public rights-of-way.

  • Instructors:
  • Topics:
    • Best pruning times, techniques, and tools
    • How best to maintain City clearance standards for trees in public rights-of-way along footpaths and streets
    • How to reuse prunings (cut up with hand tools or chipped with chipper/shredder) as an asthetically-pleasing, water-conserving, fertility-enhancing mulch

Immediately after the pruning, we will turn the prunings into mulch with a chipper/shredder that will be following along behind the pruners. This way the pruned biomass is recycled back into the root zone of the trees it came from. Nothing is thrown away or removed from the natural system.

This is how to transform wasteful Brush & Bulky into resourceful Chipped & Mulchy!

Come learn how you can replicate and evolve this practice to grow more healthy forests and citizen foresters in your neighborhood.

This workshop is open to, and can be attended by, EVERYONE, no matter what neighborhood you live in.

NOTE: All public rights-of-way in front of properties must maintain a minimum continuous clear walkway area 5 feet wide and 7 feet tall to make our neighborhood walkways and forests accessible for all.

See our Dunbar/Spring Neighborhood Walkability Study –> here.

Chipping service (by donation):

Turn “wastes” into resources, as you transform your prunings into mulch

Throughout the pruning workshop day, Omar Ore-Giron will be operating a rented industrial chipper-shredder to quickly turn prunings into mulch. To cover costs, he will be asking for a donation of $30 per property for those using the chipper services. This is an amazing deal, as this ervice would ordinarily cost well over $100 per property.

Pruning Requirements and Guidelines for Neighborhood Mulching Service in Dunbar/Spring Neighborhood

  • You must contact Omar (nativeroots.az@gmail.com, (520) 425-9795) by Friday, September 1, to let him know you want your prunings mulched. Suggested minimum donation is $30.
  • All public rights-of-way adjoining all properties must maintain/prune a continuous clear walkway a minimum of 5 feet wide and 7 feet tall, so two people can comfortably walk along the path side by side without having to duck under limbs. Violations are subject to a citation from the City of Tucson.
  • All piles of prunings left beside street curb (for chipping into mulch) should should include ONLY freshly pruned, green limbs 3” or less in diameter.
  • No old, dry dead wood will be chipped into mulch (this dulls the chipper blades too quickly).
  • Please pile branches so branch butts are all facing in the same direction. This helps ensure that the pile of prunings is not tangled, but rather is orderly and therefore easy to pull from to chip into mulch.
  • Wide branch “crotches” or “V’s” should be cut at their base, so the branch will fit into the chipper (no diameter can exceed 3 inches).
  • All piles must be on the street curbside before chipping equipment arrives on site.

This is a wonderful opportunity to:

  • Meet neighbors, build community, and expand your knowledge of local plants and ecology;
  • Prune your trees in a way that will improve their health, and reduce the future need to prune;
  • Make walking and bicycling in our neighborhood more convenient, enjoyable, and safe;
  • Keep our trees’ useful biomass and fertility in our neighborhood;
  • Increase our living soil’s ability to bioremediate/filter pollutants;
  • Enhance our soil’s ability to absorb and hold onto water, thereby lessening flooding AND reducing water bills; and
  • Maximize the amount of carbon we can beneficially sequester in our soils and trees.

Bring a hat, work gloves, water bottle, and
pruning tools if you have them (we will also have some for those without)

If you have trees in need of some pruning, prunings in need of chipping into mulch, or would like to participate, please contact: Omar Ore-Giron, Dunbar/Spring resident and owner of Native Roots Landscaping, at nativeroots.az@gmail.com

Sponsored by:

Dunbar/Spring Neighborhood Foresters
Desert Harvesters


September 2, 2017
8:00 am - 12:00 pm