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Dwarf apple tree

Hello, we have a 3/4 year old Dwarf Worcester Pearmain, looking for pruning advice, seems to vary depending on site you look at. Thank you.


  • pansyfacepansyface PEAK DISTRICT DerbyshirePosts: 17,999
    A photo would help a lot in deciding the answer.
    Apophthegm -  a big word for a small thought.
  • plumbplumb Posts: 56
    Hope these help.
  • plumbplumb Posts: 56
    Any advice would be appreciated
  • pansyfacepansyface PEAK DISTRICT DerbyshirePosts: 17,999
    edited November 2020
    Sorry to have taken so long to get back to you.

    OK, there are three types of apple tree. They are mostly spur bearers, that is trees that fruit on little spurs that appear along the branches. These trees tend to look rather dense and shrubby as time goes on.

    Then there are tip bearers that fruit only at the tips of small side branches. People are always reluctant to prune them because they fear losing the flowers. As a result, these trees can grow into gaunt, lanky things that look rather like a bachelor uncle that has spent his life deep in academic books and who needs to get out a bit more.

    And then there are partial tip bearers, which produce flowers both on spurs and at the ends of small branches.

    Your Worcester Pearmain is a partial tip bearer, and that’s why it looks a bit gangly. You have to persuade it to produce more spurs.

    It’s a nice shape, which is good.

    Here are two extracts from my favourite book, “Growing Fruit” by Harry Baker.

    First, you can see that partial tip bearers are pruned like spur bearers.

    And then you can see how spur bearers are pruned. The illustration shows the same branch over a number of years.

    ”Maiden” just means this year’s growth. “Lateral” is a branch that sticks out to the side. Laterals are cut to a bud that faces in the direction that you would like the tree to grow next year (so not pointing towards the centre of the tree).

    Don’t fret about getting everything exactly right. Trees never grow how you want them to and they never look like the illustrations in books.

    Hope that helps.
    Apophthegm -  a big word for a small thought.
  • plumbplumb Posts: 56
    Thank you, I am sure it will be helpful once read and digested.
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