Your fruit trees are designed to give you lovely, lush fruit every season, but if you don't prune them during the colder seasons you may end up with a surplus of tiny fruit that you can't enjoy. In some cases, your fruit trees may not bear fruit at all. Learn 3 benefits to pruning your fruit trees, and when and how you should prune them for optimum production.
A pruned fruit tree is able to have their fruit-bearing branches reach the sun for the best growth of fruit. Otherwise, your new branches grow wild, blocking most of your buds from reaching the sunlight they need to thrive. When you prune your fruit trees, the remaining branches are able to get all the nutrition they need without competition.
Larger fruit production
The less branch structure your fruit trees have, the more fruit they will produce. Rather than having a large amount of tiny fruit that is unable to reach its optimum growth due to too much fruit production, pruning allows a lesser yield of larger, tastier, and healthier fruit production instead.
When you prune your trees, the too-tall branches on top are thinned out, allowing fruit to bear down lower branches for easier picking. The weighted branches also hang lower to the ground and receive a natural balance of sunlight and shade as well.
When to prune your fruit trees
You want to prune your fruit trees in the late fall or late winter, when the trees are not actively budding. If spring has already arrived and you still want to prune them, you can do so, but you will limit or even eliminate the fruit production for the coming season.
How to prune your fruit trees
Start by pruning off the highest branches entirely. These branches typically receive the least amount of nutrition since they are so far away from the root source of the tree. Once these have been cleared, prune the inner area of your fruit trees to allow light into the middle of the tree. This allows for sunlight to penetrate the entire fruit tree, which will lead to better fruit production and optimum continued growth of the tree. It's OK to prune low-hanging branches or longer branches as well since the tree will continue to sprout growth from where they have been cut.
Your fruit trees will always benefit from a healthy pruning. A landscaper or tree service professional, such as Arbor Man Tree Care, can prune them for you or you can trim away at excess branches yourself. You will notice healthier, fuller fruit trees if you prune them yearly to keep their shape.