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Shemitah

Poisoning and removing shoots that emerge from trees

Rabbi Moshe Bloom

I have a wild type of tree from the willow family. During the year we have new shoots surfacing and must poison them and pull them out as their roots can be very aggressive. Can we do this treatment during the shemitah year?

Repotting a broken pot (outdoors)

Rabbi Moshe Bloom

Whilst cutting a neighbouring tree a branch fell and broke a pot. Can I lift the pot and soil and put in a new container or I just have to beg forgiveness and replace after shemitah?

Open to the air and on a man hole.

Pruning lemon trees now while they are still sixth-year fruit

Rabbi Moshe Bloom

I have an orange tree and our neighbor's lemon tree overhangs our property. Does this mean that we can trim back the trees before they have kedushah status as well?

Treating heter mechirah produce as having kedushat shevi'it

Rabbi Moshe Bloom

I don't believe in the halakhic basis behind היתר מכירה. However, I live with roommates who do not see it as a problem, and our food is shared. Invariably, I end up eating היתר מכירה. Since I do not believe in its halkhic basis, and, however, do end up eating it since it's incredibly difficult otherwise, should I consider all the היתר מכירה fruits and vegetables to have קדושת שביעית?

Vegetables that started growing before shemitah, but are sold and bought (without heter mechirah or otzar beit din)

Rabbi Moshe Bloom

I used to buy produce from a farmer who doesn't have a hechsher, and says that he is selling produce that began growing before the beginning of shemitah and that his produce has kedushat shevi'it. He isn't part of an otzar beit din.

Isn't that a problem? I mean, the produce is supposed to be hefker and you are not supposed to transact with it. Am I allowed to eat the vegetables? I accidently bought some already before checking him out.

Digging up a plant and moving it to a covered balcony

Rabbi Moshe Bloom

BDE my father passed away. We have finished shiva and tomorrow I am clearing his house.  Can I dig a plant from the garden and move it to a pot and keep it in a pot on a covered balcony? Or am I not allowed to dig it up.

Removing suckers at the base of trees during shemitah

Rabbi Moshe Bloom

There are suckers that often sprout at the base of tree trunks, especially common with olive and pomegranate trees. They ruin the trees' aesthetics. Can I remove them during shemitah? What about citrus trees? Does it make a difference if the growths are from below the graft line?

Repotting a broken pot

Rabbi Moshe Bloom

Whilst cutting a neighboring tree a branch fell and broke a pot. Can I lift the pot and soil and put in a new container or I just have to beg forgiveness and replace after shemitah? Open to the air and on a man hole.

Vegetables that started growing before shemitah, but are sold and bought (without heter mechirah)

Rabbi Moshe Bloom

I used to buy produce from a farmer who doesn't have a hechsher, and says that he is selling produce that began growing before the begining of shemitah and that his produce has kedushat shevi'it. He isn't part of an otzar beit din.

Isn't that a problem? I mean, the produce is supposed to be hefker and you are not supposed to transact with it. Am I allowed to eat the vegetables? I accidently bought some already before checking him out.

Pruning lemon trees now while they are still sixth-year

Rabbi Moshe Bloom

I have an orange tree and our neighbor's lemon tree overhangs our property. Does this mean that we can trim back the trees before they have kedushah status as well?