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bearing fruit

Posted: Mon Sep 26, 2011 6:46 pm
by reservoirman
hello all im new to this forum,i wonder if Im doing something wrong.About 6 years ago i planted 3 apple trees. one mac, one cortland and a spitzenburg. They are semi dwarf trees and I thought they would bear a little fruit. I spray them with dormant oil in the spring and prune them in the spring also. I dont think Ive gotten 10 apples off the whole bunch since i planted them as saplings. Do you think im doing something wrong or are the trees still too young Thanks Stan.

Re: bearing fruit

Posted: Thu Sep 29, 2011 3:20 pm
by OrangePippin-Richard
6 year old semi-vigorous trees should be producing a lot more apples than that. Pollination is a possible issue but whilst the Mac and Cortland may not cross-pollinate the Spitz should be able to pollinate both. Do you get much blossom? Perhaps you should leave out the dormant oil spray, and especially give the spring pruning a miss.

Re: bearing fruit

Posted: Fri Aug 24, 2012 10:16 am
by kinfree
The information is very interesting. Thanks for sharing the info.

Re: bearing fruit

Posted: Sat Aug 25, 2012 8:44 am
by PA_Docent
Are the branches more upright than parallel to the earth? I am selectively pruning and spreading my branches so they are at 45-90 degrees. Branches that are more parallel to the earth should be more favorable to fruit production. I am a second year apple grower and all my trees have been planted within the past two years. I had more trees flowering this year and set fruit. Only one apple is maturing as the others fell off (prematurely or perhaps from the bad storm we had just after setting fruit).

Re: bearing fruit

Posted: Sat Aug 25, 2012 12:55 pm
by dmtaylor
Cortland is definitely a tip-bearer, and I believe its parent, McIntosh, may also be tip-bearing. Any pruning needs to be done with extreme caution as if you tip every branch, you'll get almost zero fruit because on a tip-bearer, the fruit buds mostly tend to form at the tips. This could explain the lack of fruit on any of the trees, since Cortland and McIntosh are family, so any pollination there would be incestuous, and if these two didn't flower at all due to pruning or whatever, then the Spitzenburg certainly wouldn't set fruit either as flowers of one of those other two would be needed as a pollination partner. Without flowers and pollination partners to go around, very little if any fruit.

For anyone in a similar situation, take care to know your cultivars. If they are tip-bearers, don't prune at all for a year, and you will likely be very pleasantly surprised the next season.