Trembling in the Breeze

Chances are that the books on your nightstand might have started out as Populus tremuloides. The tall, smooth tree is a relatively fast grower, so popular with pulp and paper mills. This sun-loving tree is often one of the first deciduous trees to regenerate areas decimated by fire, in part due to its underground root suckers. Those suckers can clone huge colonies of trees, which continually regrow from their roots, marking some of them as among the oldest living organisms on earth.

aspen leafHave you guessed its name yet? How about a few more clues. This tree can be found everywhere in Canada, except the northernmost regions, due to its intolerance of permafrost. It grows to approximately 25 metres tall, with smooth grayish/greenish-white bark marked by dark horizontal lines. It produces green dioecious (trees are either male or female) catkins before leaves emerge. By early summer, the fruit matures into tiny capsules covered in a white, fluffy down for seed dispersal, although typically this tree propagates from its root suckers. The smooth, rounded leaves are green and its long leaf stalk is flattened. This makes the distinctive leaves tremble in the slightest breeze.

While these trees are known by many names—white poplar, quaking aspen, quivering aspen, golden aspen—the name it is best known as is Trembling Aspen. According to ReForest London it is native this area, but not necessarily the best choice for homeowners with limited space, due to its suckering nature. It prefers full sun, but is adaptable to most soil and moisture levels, aside from the wettest locations. While it is quick-growing, it also short-lived and breaks down rapidly. The wood is soft and brittle, making it dangerous to surrounding buildings due to its weak nature. As far as firewood goes, it’s not much better, as it dries slowly, rots quickly, and doesn’t throw off much heat.

But I bet the next time you see a blazing yellow stand of trembling aspen quaking in the woods, you’ll recognize this beautiful tree in an instant.

Aspen (Populus tremuloides) 02.jpg
Aspen (Populus tremuloides) 02” by TewyOwn work. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons.

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Spring Cleaning in the Yard

Now that the weather has finally begun to warm up, I know that everyone wants to get outside. It’s about time, we know! The sunshine is calling and pasty Canadians everywhere are responding.  Time for spring cleaning the yard. So grab your garden tools and lets look at what to do and what NOT to do this time of year.

Spring Cleaning in the Yard


There are some things you want to prune this time of year and other plants to leave alone. As a general rule, you can prune dead, diseased or damaged limbs any time throughout the year. After that, most trees can be pruned in winter or early spring before the growing season begins. This improves the overall health of a tree; its shape, the sunlight and airflow through it, any branches that are rubbing or crossing, and eliminates suckers or water sprouts.

There are always exceptions to this rule though. Any early blooming trees or shrubs should be pruned after they flower. You wouldn’t want to miss those blooms! These include;


Wait until after flowering trees and shrubs bloom to prune them

  • Azalea
  • Flowering Dogwood
  • Flowering plums & cherries
  • Forsythia
  • Lilac
  • Magnolia Trees
  • Rhododendron

Likewise, some deciduous trees do better being pruned at other times of the year; either in fall, winter or late summer. This helps to prevent infection or insect infestations, like the emerald ash borer, Dutch Elm Disease or oak wilt. These trees include;

  • Ash Trees
  • Elm Trees
  • Oak Trees
Birch Trees

Wait to prune trees that are considered ‘bleeders’ until after the leaves unfurl

There are other trees that are considered “bleeders”; when they are pruned, sap flows. In general, this doesn’t harm the tree, but to avoid any concerns wait until the leaves are fully out to prune these trees;

  • Birch
  • Dogwood
  • Maple

Now that you know what to stay away from, you’re good to go. Get out there and enjoy the weather! Always make sure to practice safe pruning measures. If you are still in doubt, contact CLC Tree Services with your questions or book an estimate today –
(519) 685-0257.
Happy Spring Cleaning!

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See You at the Show

  • There are 35 tree services companies found in the London, Ontario Yellow Pages
  • There are 11 tree services companies listed on the BBB of Western Ontario’s
  • There are 4 tree services companies who will be at the London Spring Home and Garden Show this weekend
  • Only 2 of those tree services companies are accredited businesses of the Western Ontario BBB AND are ISA members
  • Only 1 of those tree services companies has won the BBB Business Integrity Award, a Best of London award, is a member of the Million Tree Challenge, and has participated in OCAA sponsored Day of Service events;

Celebrating 25 Years LogoCLC Tree Services

~April 10-12th, 2015 at Western Fair Agriplex Building, 845 Florence St, London, ON


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Time For Spring—The London Spring Home & Garden Show!

April is a great month. It welcomes back the return of birds, the emergence of the first flowers and of course the long-awaited unfurling of a new season’s leaves. Bring on Spring!

You know what the return of spring means, don’t you? It means that the 39th Annual London Spring Home and Garden Show is right around the corner! And of course CLC Tree Services will be there.

This year’s show runs from April 10th – 12th, 2015. Hours will be 12-9 pm on Friday, 11 am-8 pm Saturday, and Sunday 11 am-5 pm. General tickets cost $12, seniors are $9 and children under age 12 are FREE. Plus, if you need to return to see more of the show or to make a purchase, you can also return for free.

So what do you have to look forward to at this year’s show, you wonder? Well, you get the chance to meet some of the CLC Tree Services team at booths 705 and 706 of course. But there are a few other people to see as well, like Nicholas Rosaci (DIY GUY for Cityline and Dabble Magazine), Kathy van Gogh (from van Gogh Furniture Paintology), Sara Collins (Colour Expert for Color Company Decorating Centre), and Ben Porchuk (Ecologist & Native Plant Expert).

Plus don’t forget to visit the stages found throughout the Western Fair Agriplex building. You might learn something at one of the shows on the Ideas Stage, Gardening Stage or at Porky’s Grilling School. Be sure to stop and smell the flowers at the Spring Flower Show and Competition too. And don’t forget your wallet for the Home and Garden Marketplace. It is always full of amazing deals! Plus, you can get a head start on your spring planting by stopping by the Home and Garden Plant Sale, sponsored by Baseline Nurseries. If you are looking for freebies though, don’t forget to bring a pen to enter a ballot to win 1 of 10 great prizes.

A special treat this year will be some cool demonstrations by area chainsaw carver Ted Hayes. Not only is he a local—he’s a graduate of Beal and Fanshawe College of Arts program—he has also contributed to the London Tree Trunk Tour. And he’ll be there carving all three days of the show just outside the main entrance! You can’t miss him.

We hope to see you there!

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Spring Tune-up for your Trees

Spring has officially been marked on the calendar. Yup, it’s here! I know that you can still see motley mounds of snow around London, Ontario, but it is fading fast. You know what that means, right? It’s almost time for spring cleaning!


I have an idea. Why not avoid the winter-streaked windows by heading out to do yard cleanup instead. Before you run out onto your spongy lawn though, why not take a minute to think about what you need to do. It’ll prevent you damaging your dormant grass and save you time and energy in the long run. With a few helpful tips from CLC Tree Services that is!

Maintenance for your Trees this Spring

  • First things first, if you wrapped any of your trees for winter, now is the time to take off any burlap coverings. While wrapping a tree (depending upon the species and its needs) will protect it from potential winter damage, once spring arrives for good, your tree will need to breathe once more. Your trees are begging for that spring sunshine too!
  • Dead limb

    This limb has been dead long enough to make for a tasty treat for area birds and insects

    Before the leaves on your trees begin to unfurl, take a look at your trees to see if they received any damage over the winter. Are there broken branches that need to be removed? Do you see limbs that are absent of buds (a sign of a dead limb)? Now is the time to get a good look at your trees and assess their health. Dead or damaged branches should be removed to deter insect infestation and disease. If you aren’t sure, contact a certified arborist to inspect your trees and advise you whether they would benefit from a pruning.

  • Fertilizing a tree helps to promote growth in young trees and healthier mature trees

    Fertilizing a tree helps to promote growth in young trees and healthier mature trees

    Spring is also a great time to fertilize your trees. Wait until they are active again—late spring or early summer—before applying fertilizer. At CLC Tree Services, we offer tree fertilization via injection just under the soil’s surface where the feeder roots lie. This is the best and fastest way for your tree to receive the nutrients they need to thrive.

  • Another service you might want to consider is aeration. Tree roots require oxygen. Soil compaction can prevent your tree’s roots from getting sufficient air to them though. By aerating the soil around your tree, you improve the tree’s ability to absorb oxygen through its roots. That makes for a healthier tree and a happier you!

The best part about trees in your landscape though is that they are relatively low-maintenance. Their buds will burst when they are good and ready, and all you have to do is sit back and enjoy the show.

Soon enough area trees will dazzle us with their spring colours

Soon enough area trees will dazzle us with their spring colours

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