HOW EASILY TO FORM A COMPACT AND BEAUTIFUL CHERRY TREE IN TWO TAKES.
Among stone fruit species, sweet cherry has the lowest bud awakenability, which is why the crowns of mature trees are distinguished by slight branching. Trees that were untimely formed, as well as those that underwent only light pruning, stand out for their noticeable ankle and tall stature. I would like to offer my own reliable and simple way of forming young cherries, applicable to any variety.
CHERRY FORMATION - LOW STAMP
Unlike many fruit crops, sweet cherry has a relatively low reserve of frost resistance.
Its most vulnerable places are the bole and forks of large skeletal lateral branches. Therefore, in order for the lower part of the tree to be under snow in winter, it is necessary to initially lay a short stem.
To do this, in the first year of pruning a one-year (two-year) tree, you need to leave a part about 50-60 cm from the ground. You should not regret leaving more - this will not be detrimental to the plant. The cut is made with an indent of 1 cm from the upper bud, it is better to cover the wound with thick oil paint (it has better adhesion, in contrast to the garden varnish).
FORMATION OF CHERRY ON THE "PRINCIPLE OF THREE"
Of the buds closest to the cut, during spring-summer, as a rule, several shoots grow, but only three need to be left, and the rest are simply broken off in a non-lignified state. In the spring of next year, these remaining shoots are cut very shortly, each into three buds.
By autumn, shoots are actively developing from them: most have a gently sloping branch (shown in photos 1 and 2). What are we trying to achieve? Firstly, we get a leaderless, "fluffy", and most importantly - a low crown. Secondly, such pruning ensures early maturity: the greater the angle of branching, the faster and in large quantities flower buds are laid on them.
The procedure for shaping and pruning new plants is carried out at established positive daytime temperatures - up to the phase of greening of the kidneys.
The crown frame prepared in this way does not require any more complex and serious "surgical" techniques. The tree further grows freely. If some individual shoots stand out with a stronger growth or intersect, then they can be easily pinched during the summer, and the excess, thickening the crown, can be broken out at the base in a herbaceous state. Trees always react painlessly to green operations.
I usually bring the height of a cherry tree to 3 m, after which every year, in the second half of March, I cut off all vertical shoots that exceed the indicated height. I leave the gentle branches, but I shorten them if their length exceeds 80 cm. I cover all the sections, and in the phase of the bud extension I do preventive treatment against the monilial burn.
Reference by topic: Cherry pruning and shaping + slowing its growth (Voronezh)
HOW TO FORM A CHERRY - VIDEO
© Author: Yuri Pryakhin, agronomist
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