Apple tree

Manda_Rae

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No Apples appeared but I'm still thrilled it bloomed this year.
2 angles of this tree
 

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ducks4you

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@Manda_Rae ,
You don't prune in the Fall. You should be pruning same time as me, late February/early March.
You want the tree to be dormant and not give openings in your trees for insects.
The ONLY time I have pruned in warm weather is:
1) brokien branches, and I prune about 3 inches back
2) pear tree that had blight
I read online several articles and I pruned back ALL affected branches 8 inches and saved the tree.
This tree has rewarded me and has Tried to give me big harvests. Late freezes have killed off blossoms for many Springs, BUT this year, it is covered with fruit.
I have put 3 pears in a paper lunch sack so that they will ripen more quickly.
This week I will need to start harvesting pears.
I have pears on waterspouts and DD noticed that one which is loaded with fruit is Also partially broken. It grew vertically, then fell over.
When I harvest all of the fruit, I will cut that back to the trunk.
No matter how close we are, zonewise and distance, Pennsylvania has a different climate than Illinois. Please check HERE:
 
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ducks4you

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Let me take shots of my two young apple trees tomorrow. They are "Johnagold," a Johnathan hybred developed locally at the University of Illinois, so made for my climate. Didn't take a head count, but 2 years after planting each tree has about a dozen nice sized apples on it.
When I moved here there were 3 Golden Delicious Apple trees on the property and one very old Peach tree.
When we re fenced the horses got one of the GD apple trees, and every year they strip it. I really Need to prune it this winter, or, I will lose it, like I did the huge GD tree that hadn't been pruned. It died limb after limb, and I burned up all of the dead wood. The peach tree died from lack of pruning, but I am still not sure peach trees belong in our state bc we are too wet. It may have also gotten too old.
A recent farmer's article said what I have theorized for a long time, that Illinois is Really a reclaimed swamp, and peach trees like it dry. Where I planted my newer peach tree it doesn't puddle during heavy and rainy periods, so it's doing well. Fruit producing...not so much.
I still have the other GD tree, although I have hacked off dead wood on it for the last few years. It Still tries to make apples, though they are on the small side.
I can still harvest them, wash and cut into fourths and boil and can the juice.
It still Wants to live, but we'll see what happens to it.
Contact the link I gave you and study up on pruning. There are LOTS of You Tube videos about it. Many people use a hand saw. I prefer to use a reciprocating saw bc I like that it makes clean cuts.
Then...there is disposal. My property is AG2, so I can keep livestock on my 5 acres. I also have a 4' x 4' firepit and surrounding 16"pavers, so I can cut up what I prune, let it dry out and burn it.
If you can do that, you will enjoy the fruits of your labor.
If NOT, go to @Phaedra Geiermann's, Chop and Drop thread about Hugelkulter, where you build the soil in a deep raised bed by laying down large logs, then smaller, then sticks, then compost (I think), then soil.
Point is, you can use limbs and sticks that you have pruned for this purpose.
 

Phaedra

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I learned a good lesson recently, before pruning, it will be helpful when you have an overall concept of the parts of the tree you will be working with.

I didn't realize this until last week, and I removed many laterals simply because I didn't know those were high-value laterals with flower buds. Of course, I didn't realize how flower buds are formed, how to encourage more flower buds, etc. Many YouTubers would demonstrate how simple, quick, and effective to finish the pruning work without explaining the why and how.
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Pruning without these basic understandings will cause as many troubles as we don't prune. I bought this book recently and liked it very much. The author offered both know-how and know-why.

I didn't know Orin Martin before, but I was surprised that Alice Waters did the Foreword. Orin Martin has some demonstrative videos, which are pretty helpful, too.
7353.jpg

For example, finally, I know why and how I should do the summer and winter pruning for my young apple trees.
 

ducks4you

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What summer apple tree pruning is suggested?
Btw, my research suggests that as long as your cuts are clean and the right distance from the trunk, the trees will pretty much ALWAYS do better. Sometimes we forget that trees grow to suffer being eaten by herbivores. I even saw a program where the entimologist was recommending natives bc natives have evolved to recover from insect predation and usually don't even Look like insects are eating on them.
I prune my fruit trees and I prune my existing pine trees that the previous owner planted (at $1.00/tiny tree). They were about 5 ft tall when we moved here, now over 30 ft tall. I raised the crown on over 20 of them, and I often take down lower branches that want to snap off by using my reciprocating saw and cutting clean close to the trunk.
Since many pine trees don't like our swampy climate--like Colorado Blue Spruce, and I have about a dozen of them--they need help, and I have seen them recover after pruning.
Plus they Look better after pruning, not so ragged.
I pruned my Magnolia this Spring, too, and it is very happy.
I Plan on doing some major pruning of my peach tree. I have read that if the tree thinks it's dying it will produce more fruit. We'll see...
 
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Suzee

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I'll probably need to prune this fall. Does anyone have any good resources for pruning apple trees?
I am not an experienced orchardiest. I purchased 2 trees online 2 years ago. They were quite expensive. Both died before their second season. This year, I went to Walmart and bought 2 honey crisp trees that were already in bloom. I didn’t expect to get apples but they actually set fruit that I harvested about a month ago. About a dozen good apples.

Now I am in the same position as you - wondering what to do next… From my researching online, I found that pruning is a late winter, early spring activity.

So… I wrapped my babies’ trunks to protect against pests and harsh weather, and caged them against the deer. I will prune them in late winter and spray with dormant oil before they bud - also late winter to early spring. I’m kind of nervous about this, so if anyone has more wisdom to share I am all ears! Good luck!
 

Suzee

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Th
I learned a good lesson recently, before pruning, it will be helpful when you have an overall concept of the parts of the tree you will be working with.

I didn't realize this until last week, and I removed many laterals simply because I didn't know those were high-value laterals with flower buds. Of course, I didn't realize how flower buds are formed, how to encourage more flower buds, etc. Many YouTubers would demonstrate how simple, quick, and effective to finish the pruning work without explaining the why and how.
View attachment 51147

Pruning without these basic understandings will cause as many troubles as we don't prune. I bought this book recently and liked it very much. The author offered both know-how and know-why.

I didn't know Orin Martin before, but I was surprised that Alice Waters did the Foreword. Orin Martin has some demonstrative videos, which are pretty helpful, too.
View attachment 51148
For example, finally, I know why and how I should do the summer and winter pruning for my young apple trees.
ank for this! I’m getting the book!
 

Suzee

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Thanks for this thread everyone! I have been scared of pruning since moving to a much colder and higher elevation. I don’t know why, just am. I don’t have that many years left to get this right! Ha,ha.
 

Blowerat

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Awesome to hear your Red Delicious Apple tree blossomed! 🍎🌸 Blooming is a positive sign, but it doesn't guarantee a massive harvest. Ensure good care, like proper pruning and pollination, for the best shot at a fruitful yield. 🌳🌼
 
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