how to grow a pixy plum and a quince c pear

neilbradburnneilbradburn Posts: 72
Hi all,
I bought a bundle of 3 bareroot fruit trees from YouGarden. I've planted the m26-equivalent Braeburn apple as a cordon in my current row of cordon apples. That leaves me with a pixy-equivalent Victoria plum and a Quince-C-equivalent pear and I'm wondering how to grow them in the least amount of space, but at the same time to get a reasonable crop off them ,and would value your input and any relevant experience.

I like the idea of growing them both as 'column' trees, as I imagine they would look very pretty and the width (60cm) would allow me to slot them in one of my vegy beds without creating a worrying amount of shade; however, I imagine that my varieties aren't really going to lend themselves to this and will not crop well (I gather the column trees you buy are based on the refined breeding of 'short armed' instances of these trees). If that doesn't work, perhaps I could grow them both as an oblique cordons?... Or perhaps step-overs?... Or something else...? :-) I'd really value your wise input on this.

Many thanks in advance!
kind regards



  • purplerallimpurplerallim LincolnshirePosts: 1,395
    Any tree in your veg bed would compete for water so not a good idea. My Victoria plum on a dwarf rootstock has only taken three years to reach full height of 6 foot. As plums dont like to be bushy I used an old method of growing branches at levels on the tree, holding them down at the ends with weights until they were set. Pruning out unwanted stems and then side shoots to keep air flowing over the tree. This keeps its shading factor down but still means it has a spread of 6 foot too. To keep plums small is quite difficult they need lots of tending to. Hope this helps with you placement of this tree.🙂
  • neilbradburnneilbradburn Posts: 72
    Hi purple allium,
    Many thanks for your feedback. It's all very useful information. 6ft wide is going to prove difficult. Any ideas if I can restrict this by putting it in a pot - say, 59cm wide.

    Kind regards
  • purplerallimpurplerallim LincolnshirePosts: 1,395
    Plum won't like a pot, it's a greedy feeder and needs root room. You could reduce it by half in width, but that will reduce your crop and it will take a couple of years to get it into producing fruit anyway.  For that size you will have to keep on top of the pruning. 🙂
  • purplerallimpurplerallim LincolnshirePosts: 1,395

    Not a good photo but it was taken last summer while trying to show someone what I ment by training the branches. This was before its yearly prune, so you can see just how much growth you will get.
  • neilbradburnneilbradburn Posts: 72
    Thanks, purple allium! It sounds like I need to get it in the ground and prune aggressively - but obviously avoiding the haircut-type pruning :-)

    Note, counter to how it appears, I'm not a super impulsive plant buyer :-) I wanted the apple and could see a use for the pear, so the plum was a nice bonus and problem to have. That's what I tell myself, anyway :-)

    Thanks again!

  • purplerallimpurplerallim LincolnshirePosts: 1,395
    Your very welcome 🙂
  • neilbradburnneilbradburn Posts: 72

    btw. I meant to say that your tree looks very impressive! Roll on late summer :-)
  • purplerallimpurplerallim LincolnshirePosts: 1,395
    Will try to get a better photo of whole tree, bare at this time but will show we have cut it to a Christmas tree shape and will not let it get any taller. It gave fruit mainly on the lower limbs this year.
  • neilbradburnneilbradburn Posts: 72
    A photo would be great, thanks! I like the idea of a Christmas tree (pyramid?) shape due to the reduced shade. 
    kind regards.
  • purplerallimpurplerallim LincolnshirePosts: 1,395
    Not a great photo as everything is similar colours and wet! 🙂. But you can see I have tried ( operative word) to keep it open and restrict the side limbs and side shoots. The lowest two sets of limbs were the fruit producing ones last year.

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