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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
well folks it is almost time to do some pruning once all the leaves fall off the fruit trees. I will be tackling my apple and plum trees will be first to feel the pruners. I enjoy this chore of sculpting a tree so it produces more fruit and has a set shape to it for easy harvest and production. my apple I like to think of it as sculpting a mushroom by taking off all the vertical summer branches that grew like weeds on steroids. Then I remove any branches that are crossing each other like an x or that are too close together like the letter v only narrow,then I am almost done and last but not least I look for any shoots coming from below the crotch of the tree and remove them then I go shorten the remaining branches just a little bit. my plums get the same treatment and by next year they are loaded with blossoms and then fruit.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Seems apple trees love to be pruned pretty severely and will produce more fruit. Just be sure to leave the inch-2 inch or shorter baby branches with buds on them alone. Those are your flowering/fruit buds and if take those off it is a no fruit year.
 

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my apple tree is in desperate need of pruning. I haven't cut it back for a couple seasons now. I usually prune in Dec/Jan when it's pretty certain we won't have any warmups. right now we are still getting into the upper 50's. but the last few yrs, I just haven't been able to motivate myself to drag the tall ladder out to where my apple tree is to prune it. thanks for the reminder that I really have to do that this year.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I keep mine pruned down to around 6-7 feet tall at most, prefer the semi or dwarf trees for ease of pruning and harvest. If the tree is a regular size one it may need to be done by some one who is an specialist at pruning trees for a living so it can be taken down to a more manage able size. They can also give you tips on how to keep it manageable.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
ok, I am going to dread my cherry tree it is a regular size and at 10 yrs old it is as tall as my single story house but next year or so it will be towering over my home. I got a big one for two reasons 1. it produces bing cherries, 2 as a shade tree for the yard in summer I placed it just so it would shade the house in summer but not winter. it is my only full size fruit tree. I really want to get a rainier cherry tree for the yard. they are by far the best tasting cherry I have ever had they don't ship well to other areas they are too sensitive but if you get to washington state in july you can find them at fruit stands.
 

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we love rainier cherries. they are more difficult to find down here w/o being too bruised or battered looking. We were back in Seattle one summer at the beginning of august I think and spent the afternoon at Pike's Place Market and got the best cherries and peaches ever!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
ya the peaches here are very good too seems like we have perfect weather for growing most fruits. Have you looked on line to see if you can get a rainier cherry tree to plant in your yard? I do know they don't like allot of heat/humid weather though so it may be difficult to grow a tree even that is such a sensitive type of cherry. the bings are tough and hardy pretty much any where.
 

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I have a bing in my yard. Although it's the only cherry tree I have so I've never gotten cherries! lol I did plant a mate for it, but the deer devoured it the first year and I've just never gotten another tree. . . that's something else I need to do this spring!
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
cherries are self pollinating you should get cherries unless it is blooming to early for bees. Then the fix for that is mason bees they fly earlier than any other bee and don't sting. I know apples you need three different types with in close proximity.peaches and apricots are also self pollinating.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I have been looking at my fruit trees and it is almost pruning time. I also need to add compost to my garden starting any time soon. both to top off my raised beds and build new raised as well as make another garden space just for corn and squash.
 
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