[NAFEX] Dormant vs. summer pruning

Robert G. Halgren halgren at msu.edu
Tue Apr 1 13:19:10 EST 2003

Can someone explain when you would prune fruit trees (apples) while 
dormant as opposed summer pruning?  Believe it or not, my trees are all 
still reasonably dormant here in central MI (well, they are greening up 
the cambium, but not yet budding out).

The apple trees that came with the house have not been pruned in the 
better part of 15 years, I'd estimate.  I took a fair amount of wood out 
last spring (about 25%), and need to take a whole lot more. So, when is 
the best time to remove a large amount of wood?

And, assuming I wanted to take 3/4+ of a tree out this year, when would 
be the best time to do it?  This one has the main trunk leaning well out 
over the pasture next door (at about a 45% angle, at that).  The horses 
like it, but I'm afraid the tree is going to fall over.  There is a nice 
upright leader coming off the main trunk (well above the graft, if there 
is one), and I was considering just whacking off the offending growth 
right there.  It is pretty much all or nothing.  The chainsaw is sharp...


Robert G. Halgren, Ph.D.
Bioinformatics Specialist
GTSF - Michigan State University
(517) 353-7236    -   halgren at msu.edu

More information about the nafex mailing list