I’m thrilled to have 2 apple trees in my new-to-me backyard. However, the big one was overgrown and the little one has a big pruning wound on it and needs some TLC. Although I know the basics of tree pruning, I thought it would be worthwhile to call in some professionals for this first year. Here’s the before and after (left and right), for the record, so that I can do it myself in some years (note to self to call in the professionals every 2 to 3 years). You’ll notice the big one is quite opened up compared to before, and they didn’t take much off the little one because it needs its leaves to try to recover:
OK it’s a little hard to see with my neighbour’s trees in the background! How about this:
Better? You can see more sky between branches in the ‘after’ pictures on the right, right?
Want to know more? Here’s a recent video on tree pruning.
A few tree pruning tips I’ve gleaned from it and other sources:
- it’s time to prune apple trees! (roses in a couple more weeks)
- prune spring-flowering trees and shrubs like lilacs and cherries after they flower
- get rid of branches that grow straight up and those that cross over each other -> aim for an open, vase-shaped tree that has space between branches
- prune from the bottom up with hand pruners or loppers, just outside the collar where the branch connects to the tree
- don’t use paint or pruning sealers at this time of year! Balsam is good.
- clean tools with a wire brush and rubbing alcohol
Here’s hoping for lots of apples in the fall!