ok, plums don't grow on bushes, but they are not pruned properly they
look more like bushes than trees!
anyway, I bought myself a house and it has these plum "plants" than
have been ignored for maybe over ten years. this fall we had a great
crop of plums, so i think i'll try to promote them and see if I can get
a really good crop of them.
problem is, most pruing guides dont work too well, as these have gotten
so wild that pruning them normally wouldnt do much. also, suckers(i
think?) have grown up over the ten years and are competing, making the
trees reach longer and longer. trunks 2 inches in diameter will have
branches over 12 feet long.
anyway, these plums are planted close enough together that the rule of
"make the root ball the same size as the branches" means i'd be
transplanting 4-5 trees at once, when what i really want to do is take
the 4-5 trees and separate them.
Not sure what you mean when you say normal pruning will not work. You can
safely remove about 1/3 of a fruit tree's growth every season. You should be
to get rid of the suckers, crossing branches, etc. over a few year's time.
dead branches, of course, don't count against the 1/3.
Regardless of what you do, as Sherwin suggests, it will take a few
years to clean up the trees.
If you think you are getting enough plums, perhaps you should sacrifice
2 trees and keep three - that would double your spacing. If they are
all fresh eating, poor keeping varieties, that is probably what I would
do. No family can dispatch the fruit of five trees ripening all at once
(unless you have chickens). Stanley plums, canned, are incredibly good,
by the way.
I can NEVER get enough plums :) I've no idea how well they store
because we ate them as fast as we could get them! well, we did waste a
lot of them trying to find ripe ones(pluck, bite, pucker, toss, repeat)
I'm considering taking any excess plums and making wine, so I really
dont want to sacrifice any trees. and it is more like 10-20 trees, most
so close together that typical transplanting guidelines cant apply.
looks like there were more lining the driveway, but it appears that
many years ago a shed fire wiped out a batch, and i was thinking of
movign the extras to where they were(note, this is all guess work, no
history of the house, I just look at the solutions fits)
I'm afraid you took me literally. I said you can take UP TO 1/3 of the growth.
have to use your judgement as to how much pruning is necessary. You still have
answered the question of what recommended types of pruning failed, and for what
Yes, and Stanley plums make great jam and pies, as well.
well, I suppose over (quite) a few years time they'll look presentable
if I remove 1/3 of the tree's growth every season, i'll end up having
long skinny branches with knobs of pruned growth on the ends of them.
most of the branches are 10 ft long. not sure how much growth happens
in a season, but i think you see the picture.
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