Summer pruning deciduous fruit trees

Summer pruning deciduous fruit trees

Summer pruning is monkey work. I love its simplicity. There is joyously little thought or skill involved. But it is necessary monkey work. If you want to keep a deciduous fruit tree small and you skip a summer pruning, you start to lose hold on the size and...
The Reed avocado tree: a profile

The Reed avocado tree: a profile

The Reed avocado variety is the first I ever grew. It is a great beginner’s avocado tree because it is relatively tough and productive. In addition, the fruit itself stands among the finest tasting avocados so it deserves consideration for planting by the first-time...
Thinning fruit

Thinning fruit

The most pleasing chore I have had in the yard over the past few weeks has been making sure that branches don’t break under the weight of their fruit. This certainly hasn’t been needed on all of my fruit trees, but there are some this year that would be torn apart if...
Pinch to shape young fruit trees

Pinch to shape young fruit trees

Spring is for pinching. Nothing to do with Saint Patrick’s Day, this is using your fingers to prune. In the spring, trees are growing new branches that are succulent and easily snapped off by hand: no tools required. But why pinch? And what and where to pinch?...
Reading avocado leaves

Reading avocado leaves

It was my first avocado tree’s first winter when a couple leaves started getting yellow veins. Oh no, what disease was this? I sent a photo to a seasoned avocado grower and he wrote back, “This is leaf senescence. The leaf is just dying naturally.”...
Pruning avocado trees to keep them small

Pruning avocado trees to keep them small

I think of my Hass avocado tree as small even though it is far bigger than the newly planted trees above. As I looked at my Hass last week, it stood 17 feet tall. It was time to prune. I prune it every year in order to keep it down to 15 feet. This post is about...
The Lamb/Hass avocado tree: a profile

The Lamb/Hass avocado tree: a profile

In 2013, I planted a Lamb/Hass avocado tree because its fruit was said to be ready for harvest in summer. I didn’t know much else about the variety, and I’d never tasted its fruit (knowingly). During the past five or six years I’ve learned a lot more about Lamb...

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