May 27, 2024

Tree pruning: is it a science in itself?

Late winter is the perfect time to give your fruit trees a winter pruning and keep them in good shape. Because such a cut has a positive effect on the quality of the fruits and the health and vitality of the tree.

In nature, trees grow without pruning. So, is winter cutting really necessary? Clearly: yes! Our demands on fruit quality are very high these days. But we can do justice to this only with a regular and correct cut. This has a positive effect on the quality of the fruits and the health and vitality of the tree. Once the tree has been planted and the so-called planting pruning done, training and maintenance pruning will follow in the coming years.

The shape of the crown is defined and reshaped each year. For this purpose, the main branches (main branches) are checked to see if they are still in the desired position. If this is not the case, they must be screwed into the correct position. Competitive shoots and watery shoots are cut off. In short – the tree is brought back into shape. Only lateral branches and central buds are cut on young trees. Short lateral shoots are not cut off on the main branches – this is where the flower buds are usually located. The cut should always be made above an outward-facing bud (eye). This ensures that the crown remains loose and that branches do not grow into the crown. The goal of the cut should always be to get as much light as possible into the tree. This is why whole shoots are cut off or tied horizontally. Radical rashes (the so-called wild shoots) should also be removed. It is also important to always keep the following rule of thumb in mind: the harder the cut, the stronger the tree will grow again!

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A day in late winter is a good time for fruit pruning—that is, when the trees are still dormant. Well-maintained sharp cutting tools are important for Day X.