Has anyone heard of using Coppicing to try and extend the life of a fruit tree.
For example lets say you have a none grafted peach tree now they only live about 15-25yrs what would happen if you coppiced every 10yrs? Has anyone tried it?
I know most ppl would just plant/graft a new tree at year 8 next to the old one and just stagger things like that.
I was just wondering if there would be any advantages to trying the coppiced method.
Darnell Brawner wrote:
For example lets say you have a none grafted peach tree now they only live about 15-25yrs what would happen if you coppiced every 10yrs?
I think most full sized fruit trees are longer lived than that. That's about the age of a semi-dwarf but you'd have to make sure you coppiced or pollarded above the graft. Some of the oldest trees alive were coppice so I think it would work.
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Well I didn't do it on purpose but I have a pear and a cherry that were hit hard with fireblight. They compartmentalized the blight and began to send out new shoots above the root grafts and below the dead zone. I cut down the dead part of the tree above the new shoots, they were about ten and 20 feet tall when they died, they seem to be coming back strong and healthy but no fruit yet. Really just an experiment on my part.
In my personal experience, old peach trunks get rot and then suffer fatal wind damage. Once rotted out I don't think an old peach could support the load of a freshly coppiced canopy.
The best option I think I could suggest is to sprout some of the peach seeds from your favorate trees, and then use them for grafting rootstock for the same trees. Typically when I graft sprouted seedlings, I try to leave one branch on the tree as the wildtype, so it could at least act as a pollunator. Don't be surprised if the fruit from the sprouts is somewhat different from the fruit of the grafts though. Peaches are less variable than apples, and there's a fair chance they will come true to type, but there will still be some variation.
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