Entries by Christopher Altman

Another Corymbia ficifolia

Before A very popular tree in San Francisco, these trees do well be they are well suited to sandy soils and coastal, Mediterranean climates. They come from the south coast of Western Australia. After The goal was to give this tree a thinning out, but to keep a natural shape. The job took me and […]

Big Ol’ Ficus

It is VERY important to take proper care of Ficus trees. Pay a little extra and hire someone who knows what they are doing. Often you see Ficus trees with long naked limbs with lots of green on the ends. This is called “Lion Tailing.” It’s not a safe or healthy way to trim any […]

Must be the season of the Birch

In the Bay Area, Birch trees are best pruned in Sept/October, right before the leaves fall. Pruning Birches in the Spring and Summer can lead to infestation of the Bronze Birch Borer. Pruning Birches in the Fall and Winter can lead to intense, unwanted suckering in the spring. If you have a birch tree or […]

Cordyline australis

Cordyline australis, or Cabbage Palm comes from New Zealand. In its natural habitat it can grow up to 20 meters tall with a trunk of 1.5 to 2 meters wide. They are very common in San Francisco. Unfortunately they are often misplanted; too close to foundations, too close to walls, too close to retaining walls, […]

Take the Camellia Challenge

Before Today I took on the challenge of transforming this overgrown Camellia. It had been badly pruned many years ago and left alone until now. I thinned, removed dead branches, removed many stubs, and worked on setting up the groundwork for better, more attractive layering. After After my initial pruning this shrub looks a lot […]

A Beautiful Berkeley Garden

Berkeley gardens are typically full and wild; grasses, roses, wild flowers, and small shrubs fill the space. One can grow so many plants in Berkeley because there is lots of sun, heat, and people who love their gardens. The owner of this house on Delaware Street has plants and trees everywhere. In exchange for several […]