Peach tree pruning

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This blasted tree is giving me nothing but brown rot peaches and it's a big mess. The butterflies are drunk all spring and the birds and squirrels in love with the fruit, but I need to get radical.
What if I do a REALLY hard prune this winter and give up this coming years' harvest. If I just leave scaffolding, but remove the oldest limbs, cutting it way down, then clean up every inch below the tree and remove any plants or mulch, then spray the ground with sulfur and then the tree at pink bud (if there are any) with bordeaux...any thoughts?
If I don't do something the tree is getting removed.
Victoria
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I just googled peach trees this morning. Pruning is not rocket science, and you can get some helpful instructions off Google to do it. So long as you don't cut the big one coming out of the ground, you're okay.
Sounds to me like you are having some other problems. Correct watering and fertilization at the proper time are critical. After that, birds and insects and fungus/mold have to be attacked individually and specifically. Check with a local shop. They usually can steer you pretty straight.
Our peach tree yielded five boxes of baseball size peaches this year. Best peaches I ever tasted. And that was after a year of neglect from renters.
Go figger.
This winter, I'll prune. I'll fertilize. I'll water. And we'll see what next year brings. This is our first year of ownership of this property, and for the first year, it was rented to some really lazy people.
Steve
Steve
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No, peaches will not tolerate harsh pruning. especially improper pruning. See pruning
http://www.treedictionary.com/DICT2003/tree_pruning/index.html
Sincerely, John A. Keslick, Jr. Consulting Arborist http://home.ccil.org/~treeman and www.treedictionary.com Beware of so-called tree experts who do not understand tree biology. Storms, fires, floods, earthquakes, and volcanic eruptions keep reminding us that we are not the boss.
--
Sincerely,
John A. Keslick, Jr.
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dito

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On Tue, 13 Nov 2007 10:18:18 -0500, "symplastless"

Please help me understand; what are you saying "ditto" about?
And let me make sure I was accurate in my explanation; I am going to prune out the oldest limbs. These are limbs which are growing up, not waterspouts, but an upside down umbrella. The ends are too tall to get to at 12 to 15 feet. I was going to remove those down to a lateral branch which grew this year. So, since peaches set fruit on the prior years' growth, I should be able to get some fruit from those lateral branches...right?
Actually, I'm not trying to get fruit next year, but remediate the tree with a last ditch effort to shape it laterally instead of upward and out, and to clean it up so I have less a chance for brown rot.
Are you picturing what I'm describing? If so, is THIS what you said "ditto" to, or was it the part which said peaches don't take well to hard pruning?
Victoria

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On 11/13/2007 5:30 PM, Jangchub wrote:

He said, "peaches will not tolerate harsh pruning". Ignore that!
Sunset says: "They need more pruning that other fruit trees, since they rpduce fruit on 1-year-old branches. Severe annual pruning (see text) not only renews fruiting wood -- it encourages fruiting throughout the tree rather than at the ends of saffing branches that can easily break." [From box on page 501 of Sunset's "Western Garden Book" (C) 2001; the reference to "see text" is to a longer paragraph on the same page.]
--
David E. Ross
Climate: California Mediterranean
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"David E. Ross" wrote:

Depends what he means by tolerate. It won't kill the tree if it is kept below say 40% per year, but it will cut down on fruit production.

On my dwarf Redhaven tree (15 years old), I have not been diligent about this annual pruning, yet my tree gives loads of peaches every year. However, I do the other maintenance types of pruning. What I do see is a tendency for the lower branches to be less productive, but it hasn't become a problem.

I think a more detailed explanation of pruning peach trees can be found at:
http://hgic.clemson.edu/factsheets/hgic1355.htm
and:
http://aggie-horticulture.tamu.edu/extension/newsletters/hortupdate/jan02/art9jan.html
and finally this:
http://www.coopext.colostate.edu/TRA/PLANTS/index.html#http://www.coopext.colostate.edu/TRA/PLANTS/pruningstonefruittrees.html
Sherwin
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Foolish, simply foolish
Try this book first. http://www.treedictionary.com/DICT2003/TPRUNING.html
Give your tree a chance. So many disease and insect problems are associated with improper pruning of peach trees. Most.
--
Sincerely,
John A. Keslick, Jr.
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symplastless wrote:

Oh yes, you know more than all those silly PhD's at the various universities.

You just want to peddle your book. Any snake oil you want to sell us?

And what makes you an expert?

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Why do you call them silly? They just do not give you specific details that help you hit targets and eatablish dose. That is very silly.
--
Sincerely,
John A. Keslick, Jr.
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Where did you study tree biology?
If you harshly prune you peach tree you will not have a peach tree. Go ahead.
I never heard of the book you recommend or the person who wrote it. Obviously they did not understand pruning and peach trees. maybe that's the book the nurseries use. Boy do they have problems with their peach trees!!!!!!! Just ask them about all the problems associated with the pruning you suggest.
TREE PRUNING http://www.treedictionary.com/DICT2003/tree_pruning /
--
Sincerely,
John A. Keslick, Jr.
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On 11/15/2007 4:18 PM, symplastless wrote [in part]:

Symplastless is referring to the "Western Garden Book", published by Sunset Books. This is considered the garden bible by U.S. gardeners from the Pacific Coast through the Rocky Mountains. Sunset Magazine and Sunset Books have been giving GOOD advice to western gardeners for well more than a half-century. The copyright date on Sunset's "Visual Garden Manual" is 1941.
I'm quite sure Sunset Books has never heard of John A. Keslick, Jr. (Symplastless).
--
David E. Ross
Climate: California Mediterranean
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I wonder if the heard about the death of symplast due to pruning of peach trees? Do they have any pictures of dissections of peach trees in their so called BIBLE?
--
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John A. Keslick, Jr.
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Put on the brakes for a minute. Are you suggesting that I obtain a book to read. Please provide me with the information to take to my library.
I would not like to comment on a book I have not read. At least once. Most 3 times or more of certain people.
I just sent a letter to my librarian asking for Western Garden Book published by Sunset Books. Does the book address tree treatments?
--
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John A. Keslick, Jr.
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On 11/16/2007 8:16 PM, symplastless wrote:

Tell your librarian "ISBN 0-376-03875-6".
--
David E. Ross
Climate: California Mediterranean
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wrote:

understand this. Apple trees are very forgiving. Hit them hard and they say hit me again. However peach trees respond internally, death to great amounts of symplast, which leaves the tree with little place to store starch. Peach trees require fine pruning. Not harsh pruning. Before anyone gives suggestions on pruning they should have read and understood this book. http://www.treedictionary.com/DICT2003/TPRUNING.html
Also an example of dissections is here. http://www.treedictionary.com/DICT2003/tree_pruning/peach/index.html
Anyone interested in pruning and cannot get the book, here is a website to help. http://www.treedictionary.com/DICT2003/tree_pruning /
It took me many dissections to understand what internal response of peach trees to pruning can occur.
Why do you think we have short life disease of peach trees?
As far as problems go here is a list. Remember don 't just treat the wound but the entire system.
Many tree problems are associated with the following: They are Case Sensitive.
Troubles in the Rhizosphere http://www.treedictionary.com/DICT2003/shigo/RHIZO.html
Unhealthy Trees from the Nursery / Improper Planting http://home.ccil.org/~treeman/sub1.html and Look up "Tree Planting" http://www.treedictionary.com
Improper Mulching - http://home.ccil.org/~treeman/sub3.html and http://www.treedictionary.com/DICT2003/M/ Look up "Mulch"
Improper Pruning http://www.treedictionary.com/DICT2003/tree_pruning
Improper Fertilization (See A Touch of Chemistry) http://www.treedictionary.com/DICT2003/shigo/CHEM.html
Tree Farming and Related Problems http://www.treedictionary.com/DICT2003/SOUND /
Sincerely, John A. Keslick, Jr. Consulting Arborist http://home.ccil.org/~treeman and www.treedictionary.com Beware of so-called tree experts who do not understand tree biology. Storms, fires, floods, earthquakes, and volcanic eruptions keep reminding us that we are not the boss.
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On 11/11/2007 12:50 PM, Jangchub wrote:

Of all the stone fruits, peaches probably require the most severe pruning. The amount of wood removed should be at least 1/3 of what new wood grew the prior season. (I remove about 1/2 to 2/3.) However, you should remove old wood and keep new wood. Furthermore, you should cut the tips off any new branches.
Brown rot is a fungus and is unrelated to the amount of pruning. I spray a mix of Bordeaux and dormant oil right after pruning and again at the pink bud stage. I try to time my pruning activities so that the first spraying can include my roses and grapes. If I have any spray mixture left, I also spray the ground under my camellias to prevent flower blight.
Just note that peaches are not long lived. A commercial orchard reaches its peak at about 8 years, declines after about 12 years, and might have to be removed at 15 years. This short life span is especially pronounced in my climate, where peaches do not get significant winter chilling; even varieties specially hybridized for mild winters are affected here.
--
David E. Ross
Climate: California Mediterranean
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On Sun, 11 Nov 2007 21:47:54 -0800, "David E. Ross"

Yes, I have the same problem; scant chill hours. Even though my tree is 'Dixiland' and is very low on chill hours (400) I think you're right. The proper time to prune here is February, and that goes for roses as well. This tree is in the ground for six years.
I also noticed near the stone there is usually a small white worm. Something injects the peach with its "baby" and euchhh.
I have some thinking to do...thanks David.
Victoria
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Jangchub wrote:

Victoria,
Cleaning up the remnants from last season is a good start, as is spraying in the spring. I assume when you are refering to pruning, you mean those branches that have cankers and infected shoots. If your tree has too much branch congestion, pruning out these unwanted branches will open up the tree to light and wind, both discouraging the
spread of fungus. Fertilizer may help to build up the tree's natural defenses. Apply your fungal sprays during rainy spells (use a sticker to retain the chemicals). The preharvest season is the most likely time for brown rot to take hold, that is when the fruit begins to color up. Blossom infections require an earlier spraying. Insects can spread the disease, so try to control them as well. My spraying guide does not list Bordeaux as a good choice for brown rot control on peaches. They recommend 3336 WP or Spectricide Immunox. Captan and sulfer will also work, but is not as effective. Just curious, what variety is the tree, what rootstock, and age?
Hope this helps,
Sherwin
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wrote:

It's very helpful, but I don't like to kill insects or anything else for that matter. I said in an earlier post it is a 'Dixieland' and I don't know the root stock. I don't belive the mild winters are helfpul.Actually, I think a good idea may be to remove the tree and plant a new one every two years on the property and as they decline remove them. Then I'll always have fruit.
Maybe!
I absolutely hate cutting trees down, but the rotten fruit splatting everywhere, while great for butterflies, is a pain in the buttrose.
Stay tuned...
thanks, Victoria
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