Learning while Spring pruning apples

I’ve mentioned this before but it occurred to me again this week how educational it is to prune apples and pears after the flower buds begin to swell and become obvious.

You learn what wood carries the flowers and it helps one decide how much of what needs to be left on the trees. When you see where the flowers are you can more easily see how to prune to encourage more of them- like when you see the fattest flower buds on 2-year shoots (usually all on the 2 year wood and not on the wood that formed the year before).

It’s only educational when trees are mature enough to flower, but I recommend later pruning for those still trying to learn best methods.