Couple’s apple tree tapped to train others

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Carter Park — Kate and James Ketcham were the lucky winners in an unusual raffle. Their prize? Free pruning of an apple tree they registered with the Tending the Urban Orchard program started by Urban Abundance. During a two-week promotional period, 28 trees were added to the growing list of registered fruit trees in Clark County bringing the total to 49. The Ketcham’s tree was one of them.

The Tending the Urban Orchard program offers fruit tree pruning training to volunteers in exchange for tending registered trees, which will be harvested in the fall. Half of the produce from these trees will be given to local food banks, the other half shared between the tree owner and volunteer harvesters.

Jessica Antoine, a member of Urban Forestry’s staff, taught a pruning workshop recently to 11 volunteers using the Ketcham’s tree for demonstration and hands-on training. The majority of the tools used for this project were on loan from the new Vancouver Tool Library.

During the next year, Urban Abundance hopes to develop enough pruning teams to tend all the registered fruit trees.