Though it can be comforting to eye those weighted-down branches on your fruit trees and anticipate the harvest, the sad fact is that fruit that’s too tightly clustered on the tree can begin to rot. While there are chemical solutions to some of the factors that cause rotting, a simpler organic method is to just thin out the fruit.
So whether you’re growing a backyard orchard or dwarf fruit trees in containers, don’t miss this tip.
How to Space Fruit on Trees
Apples and pears should be thinned to a spacing of 5-6 inches apart; 3-4 inches is fine for smaller fruits like apricots, while plums can be thinned down to about an inch. If you can wait until you can put these fruits to good use, that’s great. Otherwise, you can give them to the squirrels and birds as a peace offering, or let them enrich your compost pile.
Backyard Orchard Basics and Culture
This is a long video. But, it’s worth watching. There are great tips on Backyard Orchard Basics from Dave Wilson Nursery. Don’t miss the information about growing fruit in raised beds!
Want more information on growing fruits in a backyard orchard?
Here are some great articles on growing fruit in the home garden:
Complete Guide to Starting a Home Orchard
Training and Pruning Your Home Orchard from Pacific Northwest Extension: Oregon State University, Washington State University, and University of Idaho