If you have a garden, you must be aware of the need for pruning the trees at regular intervals. It is necessary for maintaining the health of the trees as well as the beauty of the garden. The same holds true in case of fruit trees also. They need to be pruned so as to make sure that the sunlight is available in right and adequate quantities. Apart from that, pruning helps to set and ripen fruit and also renews and repairs the tree. However, remember that different fruit trees require different types of pruning and one technique does not work for all. In the following lines, we have provided the basic tips for trimming fruit bearing trees.
How to Prune Fruit Trees
- Bypass Pruners
- Pruning Saws
- Anvil Pruners
- Pole Pruner
- Pruning Shears
- First of all, you need to settle on the right time for pruning. The dormant season of the trees is the perfect time for trimming them. This will ensure minimum chances of any damage.
- You will need a pruning tool for yourself, of the right size and the right sharpness. If you feel that a bypass pruner requires you to use much force, switching to a lopper is a good idea. If the lopper feels too small, pruning saw is a good option.
- The root and top of a tree should be pruned right at the time of planting, so as to ensure a proper shape of the tree. The manner of pruning will depend on the type of tree. For the purpose, it is better to either read up on the same or consult a nursery.
- While pruning a tree, first select three or four strongest branches. Now, except these branches, cut off all the other ones. Even the branches that are attached to the main trunk at a narrow angle should be removed. The strong branches will form a sort of canopy for the tree.
- While pruning a tree, make sure to maintain its basic shape. The main branches of a tree should add enough stems, so as to keep a canopy of leaves that is essential for abundant and healthy fruit.
- A tree is pruned on an overall basis, so as to control its height as well as harvesting ability. However, you also need to remove any new branches that can be seen growing at odd angles. At the same time, get rid of any old branches that are damaged or diseased.
- In the first two seasons of a tree, prune-off all of its flowers and fruits. Though you might find it difficult to do so, you have to. This will ensure that the tree becomes more rewarding in the coming years. In the third season, you can leave the flowers on and let a few fruits ripen.
- After the fruit tree becomes mature, watch it for sometime. Since some fruit-fall is inevitable, it might be possible that you might not have to prune it too much. In case of bumper crop, it is advisable to wait until after the last freeze. If you feel the need for pruning even after natural fruit-drop, go ahead.
- An old fruit tree that is still worthy can be reclaimed with scaffold pruning, undertaken over two dormant seasons. In the first season, make only a few large cuts in the crown. This will let it get sunlight and also lower its overall height. Do the rest of the pruning in the next season.