Brisbane Local Food

Growing local

Hi Everyone

First time poster here.

Just wondering about when we should be pruning our fruit trees and how much should we be taking off them? They've been in the ground for just over a year and some have fruited, some haven't. There has been a fair bit of new growth on most of them so I'm not sure if I should have pruned already or wait till when? We have a mix of citrus, apples, peach, nectarine, pomegranates, as well as a few others.

Thank you

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Happy to receive questions, there will be others that can help as well.  Pruning depends on the height and whether your trees are dwarf rootstock, and also if fruiting has taken place. 

Our citrus trees are kept small from the start.  All through the year we cut off our inside branches that is, branches that grown inside the centre of the tree.  I usually take down the height after the harvest in August, and before new spring growth. Also keeping in mind that there are late fruiting varieties of citrus. 

My peach and nectarine trees are cut straight after fruiting to allow new branches for next years fruit. Take note of the fruiting spurs. leave a few on each branch.   I still try to keep the height down to harvest height, which in turn makes it easier to net for fruit fly.  The fruit may be individually bagged as well against fruitfly. 

I don't know about pomegranates.  There are others who may do things differently to me, my main aim is to keep the trees small as we are elderly.  

Another thing we used to do when we had a large tall peachcot tree in the past.   We hit the high fruit with a big stick to make them fall off and then bagged the lower fruit that we could reach. This resulted in larger sized edible fruit.

We used to grow apple trees but it was not very successful for us, we lacked sunny spaces.

Do your pommigranite in about a month. It will have dropped all its leaves by then.  You can get away with up to half.  We just prune for size and shape. If you keep your fruit low,  it's much easier to harvest.  

Hi Stuart and Abby,

I went to Phil Dudmans talk a couple of years ago and here is the notes I took about pruning in Qld.  
Mulberry - can prune almost to the bottom of each large branch immediately after fruiting - November.
Citrus: bit by bit 20% every year.  Fruiting wood on extremities so don’t go hard o r loose all the fruit.  
Fig: winter prune when leafless. Train to frame and cut back to that frame every year (can keep 2-3 new growth for early breba crop)
Peach: early summer after harvest. Vase shape (open in centre) Remove ALL old Fruiting wood - beginning summer!!!! Don’t leave till winter. 

hope it helps 


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