I’m almost done with the first pass of apple thinning and I can see the light at the end of the tunnel for major spring activities. I did a walk around video with the idea of watching the progress of various projects that we looked at in a previous walk around video. I kind of like the idea of following some of these things through the year every month or two, so that might happen. In this video, I checked in on the pear tree that was started in an early spring/late winter video on fruit tree training with notching and disbudding. I ended up working on the tree and talking about it enough that I cut that segment out and made it a stand alone video.
The short story is that now that the shoots are grown out a bit, I trained the branch angles open as needed to avoid very narrow crotch angles. I also checked that the shoots I already chose as the tree’s main scaffold branches are not being dominated by any of the other shoots. Only one of them was as short as the shoots around it, none were shorter and 3 out of 4 were significantly longer than surrounding shoots. That is due to notching above the buds. Between removing buds that I didn’t want, and notching those I wanted to grow as the main scaffold branches, I am getting essentially exactly what I wanted and everything is going according to plan.
I’m pretty excited about the potential for applying these training techniques broadly. Reports from others so far indicate success with various species and the only major complaint has been that it isn’t working on sweet cherry, which is exactly what I found. It is worth nothing that no tree really wants to grow this way, so there is not such thing as 100% reliability. Here too is the original video in which this pear tree’s was training was started.
In this one I look at the status of the “dying mulch” tree understory system in late May. I talk about and demonstrate some apple thinning technique and also attitude, things you need to cope with getting extensive fruit thinning done. I think I get a little faster at thinning every year and much of that has been attitude adjustment. I check in on the apple frankentree grafted at the beginning of may. 18 to 20 days after grafting, it looks like all but 3 grafts took, and two of those scions that didn’t take were actually stored in the fridge for over a year, so no wonder. I also check in on the columnar trees and talk about ideas for breeding for that trait. I don’t remember what else I talked about, but here is the project report video from before this one. which I reference a few times and the video of grafting this new frankentree.