Make cuts on branch bard ridge so collar heals over itself. Do not paint or seal cuts. Make proper top cuts. Do not top trees ; control height with variety and rootstocks. Control growth direction; generally, prune to downward facing buds for horizontal limb growth. Prune to buds or branches. Do not leave stubs. Prune roots as you would and should a limb or branch.
Plant a whip and orient the buds! Cut back to about 18” above the ground. When branches begin to emerge, rub off buds oriented perpendicular to the plane of the fan. When branches are about a foot long, select two and prune all others to the trunk. When branches are about 18-24 in long, prune to a downward pointing bud. Select branches growing in the espalier plane to keep, prune others to about 6 buds.
Dormant Pruning: Do in Jan/Feb apples; at pink tip for stone fruits. Prune to a bud going in the direction you want the limb to go.
Grow Your Own, Nevada! Spring 2012: Training and Pruning Fruit Trees
PV orchard aerial view 03
TRAINING AND PRUNING FRUIT TREES Michael G. Janik ISA Certified Arboristwww.michaelsapples.com
Size control using rootstocks• Standard—25 ft and up• Semi-Dwarf or half-standard – 8 to18 ft apples, pears – 15 to 20+ ft stone fruits (cherries, plums, etc• Genetic Dwarf/Miniatures—5-8 ft• Varietal vigor
Training a Horizontal Espalier• Suitable for apples and pears• Recommend 24-16-16-16 inches• Opens tree to sunlight and air flow• Easy to prune• Easy access to spray, thin, and pick• Easily covered with bird netting• Aesthetically attractive
Winter vs. Summer Pruning• Winter (Dormant) Pruning – Promotes vegetative growth in the spring – Use to train young trees• (Late) Summer and Fall pruning – Reduces food storage in roots and hence reduces tree growth in spring – Use on older, overgrown trees to open and rejuvenate the tree. – Use to establish fruiting spurs
Rejuvenating Neglected Trees• Always – Remove dead, diseased, and damaged wood – Remove crossing/rubbing branches – Remove water sprouts at limb junction – Remove suckers at the root junction• Never – Remove more than 20% green wood each year – Never fertilize