Growing fruit trees stardew



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Growing fruit trees stardewiseThe Standard Fruit Stalk | November 10, 2012

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Everyone knows that all fruit trees need a good heavy mulch, but there’s more to growing fruit trees than that. Tree Growth Maintainers Tom and Connie Mayfield have provided us with some of their insights into fruit tree growth management, especially during the growing season. They offer some information about irrigation and fertilization, pruning, fruit protection, and stake-out tools. They also describe the tools they like to use. And if you want to know more about how to grow fruit trees, their article will give you all you need to know.

Remember to prune fruit trees properly for the season

You can avoid a lot of damage to fruit trees from over-pruning by starting to prune right after fruiting. Also, prune off early to reduce crowding. That’s a very common mistake for fruit tree growers who are pruning the wrong time.

Connie Mayfield says: “The season to prune fruit trees starts about 10 days before the first frost and continues through mid to late fall. This allows for enough time for pruning to promote good tree health. The season to prune citrus trees is relatively short (25 days or so) and the later you prune, the more noticeable the damage.

Fruit trees do not need much water, but constant drenching that doesn’t penetrate the tree’s depth is a waste of water. Too much water encourages suckering, and a disease that attacks the roots of trees (cankers).

Tom Mayfield says: “We keep our trees adequately moist, although we do not over-water. But it is important that you water on a rain schedule, or on a water-saver schedule. Most fruit trees like at least two to four inches of water per week. It may sound like a lot of water, but you’ll never regret watering your fruit trees. But be careful, too much water can drown young trees and harm branches.”

The right fertilizers for fruit trees

Connie says: “Most fruit trees do well using a balanced fertilizer. The first thing you should look at is the fertilizer recommendations. Often, these are shown in the fertilizer product labels. You can always call the manufacturer for additional information.”

Fruit tree fertilization. The Standard Fruit Stalk | November 10, 2012

Tom says: “We have found that it’s important to fertilize early in the season and often. The first thing is to use a water-soluble fertilizer. Your tree will often seek out fertilizers that are applied when it needs them. In the spring, fertilize with a 10-10-10 fertilizer. In the fall, give a half-strength fertilizer, either a 10-10-10 or a 10-20-10. Do not fertilize with nitrogen after frost because the nitrogen will burn the leaves and cause foliage problems. However, be sure to spray the plant as the leaves begin to die back in the fall, and to keep the plants well-watered.”

Is it too late to fertilize citrus trees?

Connie says: “We have fertilized citrus trees twice in the season, once in early spring, and again when the tree was dormant. We usually fertilize in the spring, too, but only in large-trees. Also, do not fertilize trees that were dropped. I don’t know why we fertilize early in the season, but it is usually after the new leaves appear, around late April. I’m not even sure if it works or not.”

Prune your trees at the right time, don’t over-water, and fertilize them regularly

Don’t over-water fruit trees

Tom says: “Our trees get more than enough water. Many of the apples and cherries have adequate water as long as it doesn’t get to the roots. We don’t over-water, and if they are in a pot or a smaller container, we water them by hand.”

Don’t over-water fruit trees. The Standard Fruit Stalk | November 10, 2012

Connie says: “Over-watering means that the soil in your containers and pots is constantly wet. Too much water encourages suckering. Too much water encourages tree disease problems, and root damage, and can contribute to root rots. If you fertilize in the spring, and mulch with compost, the soil should already be moist in the spring. If the soil is dry, use a soil-moistener.”

Check for fruit injury from animal gnawing

Tom says: “Sometimes we see animals gnawing on our trees and eating all the fruit. It s very important to get to the cause, and to check for injuries. Some trees have been damaged in a more permanent way by the roots being pulled up from soil compaction. Check the tree for damage. If any roots are damaged, dig the tree up, and repair it. If you have no answers, I would strongly suggest that you get a professional tree service company to come out and look at it. We get trees from Arizona, Washington, and California. They don t charge for any repair work. It s so important to get to the root cause of any fruit damage. But it is important to know that fruit injury from animals can get to dangerous levels, and the fruit can spoil.”

Be sure that the trees you buy have been tested by a trusted professional service company

Connie says: “You will want to purchase healthy trees from a company that offers a testing program. The way they test their trees is by measuring the girth of the tree. This way, you know they are healthy enough to ship and that they are loaded with fruit. You don t want to buy a tree and get it home only to find that it s diseased and cannot produce fruit.

When we started to fertil


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