Tips for Winter Pruning Apple Trees
Winter Pruning Apple trees in late winter can encourage the growth of more productive wood, the outcome being a better-quality crop of apples.
As branches on apple trees become more congested, they will produce smaller, inferior quality fruit. These crowded conditions can also encourage the spread of pests and diseases. Pruning can help avoid this situation.
The first step in pruning is that you must first remove any dead or diseased branches.
Prune damaged branches, and any branches that cross each other – this will prevent rubbing which will result in more damage. Remove strong shoots growing inwards towards the centre of the tree canopy.
Only shorten previous year’s growth on the main branch tips by around 1/3. Leave young side branches un-pruned – these branches will then develop fruit buds in their 2nd year.
Now take a step back and check that the tree has a good balanced shape. Remember – don’t remove any more than 20% of the tree canopy.
Enjoy your next abundant, and healthy apple crop!
*Thanks goes out to RHS for the advice here.
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