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Pruning Apple trees


 
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breezyacre
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PostPosted: Sat May 07, 2011 9:18 pm    Post subject: Pruning Apple trees Reply with quote

Hi. Two years ago, during the dormant season, I did some major pruning of the apple trees I have. I removed some very strong growth and cleared out the centres to allow light and air in. This has resulted in a multiplicity of new shoots growing. There are way too many and no fruit. can I do anything about this. Have been reading about the modified lorette system but to be honest I think I need to remove lots of the new shoots.
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michael brenock
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PostPosted: Sat May 07, 2011 9:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

you hardly know yet whether there will be any fruit there this year or not as the blossom is probably still on.
michael brenock horticultural advisor (retired)
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breezyacre
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PostPosted: Sat May 07, 2011 10:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

True but there was none last year and there seems to be an unnatural amount of wood and the light I hoped I would have in the centre is now closed off again
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michael brenock
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PostPosted: Sun May 08, 2011 6:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

hard pruning upsets the cropping pattern of apple trees. A fruit bud takes two years to produce a crop. A bud grows the first year. In the second year that bud can remain dormant or grow into a shoot or turn into a fruit bud to produce fruit the following year. You must have fruit buds to produce blossom and the harder you prune the less likely you are to have fruit buds. Severe cutting back in any one year produces a reaction of a flush of growth.
michael brenock horticultural advisor (retired)

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breezyacre
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PostPosted: Mon May 09, 2011 9:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks very much Michael. How can I redeem the situation now . Will i select some new shoots to remove this summer little by little
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Sedum and Sage
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PostPosted: Mon May 23, 2011 1:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

breezyacre wrote:
Thanks very much Michael. How can I redeem the situation now . Will i select some new shoots to remove this summer little by little

As far as I know you should be able to do this, though I think what is meant by 'summer pruning' is from maybe mid July on, presumably the sap won't be flowing so freely by then so it should be safer for the trees. I would probably only take off maybe a third of the new growth every summer, hopefully you will end up with the shape you want eventually!

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