The groundhog says we have another six weeks until Spring. Although there is no snow to push in the Northeast we have been busy pruning fruit trees. If you love to eat an apple, pear or peach from your own backyard then you should have your fruit trees pruned yearly. (Training a fruit tree is performed when you want to have a desired shape and form, but this method is done in the summer). If your tree suffers from pests in the summer, then an application of dormant horticultural oil is recommended during the dormant stage.
Benefits of dormant pruning:
- Promote better fruit for the year
- Keeps the tree from getting too tall
- Allows light to penetrate from the top
- Eliminate weak limbs so that the stronger will prevail
- It allows the wood to recover faster
- It’s easier to view the dead and damaged wood
- The bark is less likely to tear
If it’s has been several years since your tree was pruned, and it is moderately healthy you may be able to revitalize it. More work is involved because neglected trees are much taller and will require aggressive pruning and pest control.
Join the Peak newsletter
Subscribe to get Peak tips, gardening info, and special promotions!