Espalier training apple tree

(5 Posts)
mysaladdays Sun 08-May-16 12:08:44

Hi, looking for a bit of advice, hopefully someone can help smile!

I have an apple tree in a pot inherited from someone. It's about 8 feet tall, lowest branches are 2-3 feet. It hasn't been pruned for the last couple of years, but it bears fruit and I have a sunny fence with room to train it.

Can I espalier train this tree, or is it too late? I would prefer to plant it and if I could encourage the branches out it would also help to hide some of the fence grin. Obv I realise it will take several years, I just wondered if it's possible to encourage lower branch growth, or if it's just best to train the branches further up?

Also, can I transfer it now from pot to garden?

Thanks!

DoreenLethal Sun 08-May-16 12:13:18

Hard to see without seeing it. But on principle yes.

Cathpot Sun 08-May-16 16:57:53

Have - in a very amateur way- done an apple and 3 almond trees. It is pretty straightforward- the only trouble with larger trees is that you have a bare lower section. With the almond trees we have ended up bending the new thin whippy branches in an arch over and down. It's quite nice once they're done but in the summer when they are growing we end up with lots of branches growing straight up from the top. They are on wires for hedge like structure so it's ok but we should have started with smaller trees really. . The apple was much more manageable as it threw out far fewer branches and we just tied in the ones growing in the right plane and pruned off the rest. I love the look of them against a wall and in a wall situation where it can go up higher I think the lower bare bit would be fine. A quick google suggests you should be ok planting a container tree but maybe check when you are supposed to prune them?

mysaladdays Sat 14-May-16 22:30:40

Thanks for the replies smile Ive looked at pruning as suggested, it looks like I prune in August, I guess that includes cutting back unwanted side branches? Excited about getting started now!

Cathpot Sun 15-May-16 13:02:44

It will look lovely I'm sure. Maybe don't let it fruit as heavily as normal this year so it focuses on rooting properly? I've seen that advice for young fruit trees but not sure if it applies for older ones- just a guess/ I'm a beginner!

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