Re: [gardeners] Re: Sunday in the garden [sic]

George Shirley (
Mon, 25 Jun 2001 08:06:53 -0500

Carol, there are several sites with good pruning information. I've probably read
all of them so will take a shot at your problem. I would remove the two trees
beside the house and keep the two in front. You can drastically cut back the two
in front or you can tip prune, open up the middle (makes more fruit, admits more
sun) (you can even do that to the two in the back) and take out a foot or two of
the top. You may not get a lot of fruit the next year but you can continue to
tip prune, open up the middle, and take out crossing limbs. The second year you
would probably get a decent crop.

Our problem with our peach tree is not the squirrels but the !@#$% grackles. As
soon as a peach approaches the ripe stage they take a peck or two and drop it on
the ground. I've ordered bird netting for that tree specifically. I'm also
pruning it back during the summer by taking out crossing limbs before they get
any size on them, tip pruning, and, will take about two feet off the top later
today if I don't get rained out.

IIRC the University of Missouri has a good fruit tree section on their ag site
and I'm sure there are others. Good luck.


"Carol J. Bova" wrote:
> I've just been lurking and learning, so, here's my 2 cents for the day in
> the form of a situational question:
> If you bought an old house that had 4 apricot trees in fair condition, too
> high with crossed limbs from not enough pruning and no shaping, and bad
> stubs left all over, etc., and those trees produced a lovely small fruit
> with a great flavor, but the squirrels got there first more than half the
> time, leaving an awful mess on the ground of fruit with one bite out of
> it,  what would you do?
> The two largest are in the front and get good sun, the other two have a
> north exposure, between a 6 ft wood fence and the house (about 8 ft wide),
> so most of the fruit is above 8 ft up. The front trees fruit is larger than
> the side trees, but tastes the same.
> Is it better to take out the trees and start over with semi-dwarfs in the
> same or a different location, cut them back drastically to stay within the
> yard borders, or give up on apricots altogether?
> Appreciate your thoughts!
>          Carol
> Carol J. Bova,
>          Sunland, CA
>          Sunset Zone 19
>           USDA Zone 10
> At 10:53 PM 6/24/2001 -0500, you wrote:
> >There has been no gardeners mail for at least a week now. If volume
> >doesn't pick
> >up soon we will disband the list for lack of interest. Come on folks we know
> >you're lurking out there. Is everyone busy gardening?
> >
> >George