Pruning fruit trees in spring: the best tips

By Andrii MaistrenkoMar 27, 2024 15:18 PMGarden
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How to prune fruit trees in spring
How to prune fruit trees in spring. Source: pexels.com

Trees are usually pruned twice a year - in the fall and spring. In the fall, it is better to prune trees from the end of February, in March. It is important to choose a time when it is not so cold, but the trees are still sleeping and the buds have not yet formed.

For trees to bear fruit well in the fall, they need to be pruned in the spring. SSPDaily found out when and how to prune fruit trees.

How to prune trees in spring? The basic rules

  • For pruning, you should use a clean, antiseptic-treated tool. After the work is completed, it is also important to treat it to protect the garden from diseases.
  • For the same reason, in order to avoid infection of the trees, you should not prune in wet weather, after rain, after dew.
  • First of all, old branches and shoots should be pruned, because they are not as fruitful as young shoots and take away their strength.
  • You need to cut the branch above the bud located on the outside of the branch. The pruning itself should be done obliquely so that the water does not stagnate and flows off, and a new shoot appears from the bud.
  • First of all, you need to cut branches that grow strictly up and down, because they have low productivity
  • When pruning the side branches, leave a 1 cm stump. The stump will help protect the tree trunk from damage, namely, from the formation of a hollow. You should not leave a stump more than 1 cm long, so that it does not become a breeding ground for diseases.
  • Before sawing off thick branches around the perimeter of the trunk, you need to make a cut in the bark so that the bark does not peel off the main trunk of the tree. After such pruning, a stump with a large diameter must be lubricated with garden varnish.

What types of pruning are there

Pruning that shortens branches or thinning pruning. This pruning is used for young trees whose crown is just forming. Its task is to form a branched crown, to stop the significant growth of old branches so that stronger branches do not block the growth of weaker, younger shoots. After cutting off the old branches, new shoots begin to grow, on which buds will appear. How is shortening pruning done? The main thing is to cut so that a bud remains at the tip, but do not leave part of the branch. If you leave a part of the branch after the bud, the tree may dry out or start to rot in that area.

Thinning pruning is carried out on mature fruit trees with an already formed crown. The branches growing inside the crown, down the crown, and weak branches are cut off to leave the most promising for fruit growth. It helps to strengthen the skeleton of the tree, evenly distribute the crown, and create access for the sun to future fruits.

Pruning of trees after planting is carried out so that the roots take root faster and the crown of the tree begins to form.

During health or sanitary pruning, branches damaged by rot and all kinds of pests are destroyed. Such branches after pruning cannot be used as compost, they must be burned to keep the garden free of disease.

How to prune an apple tree, pear, plum, peach, apricot

For apple trees, as well as pears, the main rule of pruning is to preserve the central trunk. The side branches are shortened by 1\4 -1\3 of their length. The central trunk should be 20-25 cm higher than the upper branches, and the upper branches should be shorter than the lower ones. When the tree begins to bear fruit, and the central trunk bends over under the weight of the fruit, you should also cut it from above. And in case of thickening of the crown, to improve the illumination, cut off the upper side branches.

When pruning a plum tree, you need to adhere to its natural, namely, bushy shape. The pruning technique is not suitable for apple trees. Periodically, you need to cut out branches located next to each other to thin out the crown. As with other types of fruit trees, you need to cut off branches that are too long, sagging, and old. But the bushy shape should be preserved.

Peach and apricot trees require annual pruning due to their tendency to grow vigorously. The pruning rules are the same as for other trees - cut off the branches growing downward, close to the ground. To form low trees for easy fruit picking, the top should also be cut off.

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