• Post Reply
  • Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic

Help with a couple little apple trees please

 
David Eaks
Posts: 38
5
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
A couple years ago I bought two apple trees, then planted them in a terrible location, then neglected them. *embarassed sad face*

Now, we have moved them to a good location where we are doing a food forest garden.

The Apple trees have shoots that came up near the graft, and are now taller than the main trunk. Is this rootstock growth? Should I remove it?

Thanks.

Tree one-


Tree one closeup-


Tree two-


Tree two closeup-
 
Ann Torrence
steward
Pie
Posts: 1188
Location: Torrey, UT; 6,840'/2085m; 7.5" precip; 125 frost-free days
110
bee books chicken duck goat trees
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
It's hard to see where the graft union is-did it get buried in the transplant? If so, you want to uncover it.
Regardless, I can't think of a reason I'd want to keep thhose spouts. The sooner they go, the better.
 
S Bengi
Posts: 1355
Location: Massachusetts, Zone:6/7, AHS:4, Rainfall:48in even distribution
8
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Those waterspurts and stealing energy from the rest of the tree and putting it all to vegetative growth vs root development or fruit production. So get rid of them. Also given the fact that the internode spacing on that growth is normal it is most likely the ROOTSTOCK which is even worse.
 
David Eaks
Posts: 38
5
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Ann Torrence wrote:It's hard to see where the graft union is-did it get buried in the transplant? If so, you want to uncover it.
Regardless, I can't think of a reason I'd want to keep thhose spouts. The sooner they go, the better.


Unfortunately the graft union got buried the first time it was planted and it started growing roots. Should I still uncover it? I can lower the ground level of the terrace each of these trees are planted on easily enough.

S Bengi wrote:Those waterspurts and stealing energy from the rest of the tree and putting it all to vegetative growth vs root development or fruit production. So get rid of them. Also given the fact that the internode spacing on that growth is normal it is most likely the ROOTSTOCK which is even worse.


Thanks, that's two for removing them. These were trasplanted about three weeks ago, it won't be too much shock for these struggling trees? When transplanting, we dug really wide around the trees only to find pitifully small amounts of root mass. I will remove the shoots tomorrow morning if that's really the best thing to do.

On a positve note, the two pears which were originally planted then transplanted along with the apples. are doing much better and the graft union is several inches above the soil. Some pics and questions on those later.

I appreciate the advice.
 
S Bengi
Posts: 1355
Location: Massachusetts, Zone:6/7, AHS:4, Rainfall:48in even distribution
8
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Yes go ahead and remove the soil

Your input and output has to match, if you gut off some of the underground root structure it is best if you cut off some of the above ground structure so that it is balance, even more so when the it is a waterspout. So the short answer is that it will not harm the fresh transplant if anything it will help it.

You should also remove all the roots at or above the graft union.
 
David Eaks
Posts: 38
5
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
S Bengi wrote:Yes go ahead and remove the soil

Your input and output has to match, if you gut off some of the underground root structure it is best if you cut off some of the above ground structure so that it is balance, even more so when the it is a waterspout. So the short answer is that it will not harm the fresh transplant if anything it will help it.

You should also remove all the roots at or above the graft union.


Thanks. We were really careful not to cut off much of the roots, so the little that was there is mostly intact. I will go ahead and lower the ground to below the graft union then remove roots and the water sprout.
 
Ann Torrence
steward
Pie
Posts: 1188
Location: Torrey, UT; 6,840'/2085m; 7.5" precip; 125 frost-free days
110
bee books chicken duck goat trees
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
If it roots above the graft, it's ok, but the benefits of the rootstock (disease resistance, size control, anchorage) will be lost. The above the graft roots will perform like a seedling (full size tree). If that's what you want, you can leave it.
 
David Eaks
Posts: 38
5
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I think I was mistaken about the graft union being buried. Before doing anything drastic, I'd like to be sure.

This picture shows an area about 14" above the soil, is this the rootstock graft union?


This is another 14" above the previous picture, looks like a graft Union to me-
 
C. Letellier
Posts: 221
Location: Greybull WY north central WY zone 4 bordering on 3
13
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
That is definitely the graft. An leafy growth below it should be removed.
 
S Bengi
Posts: 1355
Location: Massachusetts, Zone:6/7, AHS:4, Rainfall:48in even distribution
8
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Yes that is the graft union 14 inches above the soil vs >2 inches. I wonder why it was grafted so high....esp for aa apple tree vs prunus.


Yes cut off the waterspout.
 
David Eaks
Posts: 38
5
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Thanks again.

So there are two grafts, one about 14" up and another about 28" up?

I got these trees through a friend who took me to the guy who grows and grafts everything himself and then sells to nurseries and/or landscapers (I'm pretty sure).

Glad I didn't act hastily and cut off roots looking for a burried graft. All the waterspouts will be removed.
 
S Bengi
Posts: 1355
Location: Massachusetts, Zone:6/7, AHS:4, Rainfall:48in even distribution
8
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Ok now I see why it is so high. The original grafter probably wanted some 'GREEN' apple branches from the 0-14 are and some 'RED' apple branches from the 14-28 inch section and some 'YELLOW' apples branches from the 28inch to 15feet section. That is a pretty novel way to create a 3N1 apple tree. But as usual you have to prune such trees constantly so that one variety doesn't take over and use all of the root resources. I know because I have a 4N1 plout tree that is soon to be a 3N1
 
Zach Muller
gardener
Posts: 776
Location: NE Oklahoma zone 7a
35
bike books chicken dog forest garden urban
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
S Bengi wrote:Ok now I see why it is so high. The original grafter probably wanted some 'GREEN' apple branches from the 0-14 are and some 'RED' apple branches from the 14-28 inch section and some 'YELLOW' apples branches from the 28inch to 15feet section. That is a pretty novel way to create a 3N1 apple tree. But as usual you have to prune such trees constantly so that one variety doesn't take over and use all of the root resources. I know because I have a 4N1 plout tree that is soon to be a 3N1


It is either that or could it be that this is grafted that way in order to 'dwarf' the overall tree? I have heard of some using a rootstock, grafting on on top of that a stem which is not intended to actually grow branches, and then a third on top which is the one to grow fruit. The middle segment acts as a bottleneck of sorts which will limit how tall the tree will want to grow. Ideally the grower trims all growth from the roots and the middle segment, and manages the top for fruit production.
 
Ann Torrence
steward
Pie
Posts: 1188
Location: Torrey, UT; 6,840'/2085m; 7.5" precip; 125 frost-free days
110
bee books chicken duck goat trees
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Zach,

My nursery calls this strategy "interstem" grafting. We are trying some, mostly g11 on mm111 and b9 on b118.
 
David Eaks
Posts: 38
5
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Ann Torrence wrote:My nursery calls this strategy "interstem" grafting.


Ah, interstem sounds likely, the term almost rings a very distant bell. When talking with the guy who sold the trees, I got the impression that he is quite passionate about his work and has been doing this for a long time. These Apples are what we ended up with after asking "what is your favorite, what you you grow?" Wish I cold remember what they are!

They are sure to be much happier in the comming years. Maybe I'll post an update next year.
 
Ann Torrence
steward
Pie
Posts: 1188
Location: Torrey, UT; 6,840'/2085m; 7.5" precip; 125 frost-free days
110
bee books chicken duck goat trees
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
David,

While we're looking, you might want to nip back that central leader in the first picture, to start another layer of scaffolding, maybe a foot down from the top. If it is an interstem, it probably has a dwarfing stock between rootstock and scion, and you might as well get it to branch sooner, keep the weight a bit lower.
 
  • Post Reply
  • Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic