Amit Enventres wrote:We seem to have every possible disease here, so I'm constantly dancing between one plant's death and another's arrival or some environmentally friendly defense against pest and disease. There are disease resistant varieties, but that doesn't mean disease proof. There are ways to reduce transmission, but with your neighbor's right there, you may not be able to control that. If the canker is in danger of taking out all trees in your area, maybe patience is key. It doesn't immediately kill the trees either, so if you grow new seedlings regularly, you could always have apples... this is the strategy our black raspberry uses against orange rust. Good luck!
Marco Banks wrote:I'm not a pom fruit expert, but those reddish spots don't seem too bad. They may actually be an indication that the tree is growing quite aggressively.
But the tree, as a whole, needs some serious pruning. If it were me, I'd remove that one large branch that is sticking out sideways from the tree and causing the imbalance and lean. Its probably too late to straighten the trunk, but at least you can bring the tree back into balance and make it lean back in the right direction.
Sometimes when a branch grows too quickly, you'll get a big split in the bark as the internal wood pushes through the static bark that surrounds it. That appears to be the case with the picture you posted with the long scar that runs along the branch. While it looks gnarly, it's not terrible for the tree.
John Duda wrote:I'd guess the leaning is a well known problem with some rootstocks. A lot of rootstocks require support their entire life. I see some frost cracking on the trunk and some damage at the base of the trunk that could be caused by being struck repeatedly by a mower. The frost cracking will keep getting more obvious as the years go by. But it could last for many years with that problem. I notice the tree is leaning in the direction of most of the top growth.
I experimented this year with grafting a size reducing rootstock onto a rootstock that grows very well in a variety of soil types, including the clay that I have here. On top of that I grafted the varieties I wanted. I got a 100% on the 7 grafts I did. If you have a serious reason for preserving your tree, with some studying you could reproduce that tree and preserve its memories. I found that the most limiting factor is the cost to do only a few, mostly because of the shipping charges. I sold my excess this spring on eBay. I charged the actual shipping as charged by the post office. The boxes were free from them also. A couple I shipped by first class parcel for 2 or 3 bucks about 1/10th the amount that I paid to buy mine.
Next spring check around, maybe you can find one rootstock that's inexpensive even considering the shipping charges.
Lori Whit wrote:I have a sideways leaning tree planted years ago at my parents place. It's over a decade old now and gives us lots of apples. We don't prune it, and leaning sideways doesn't hurt it.
I try to plant my trees better now so they'll be less likely to lean in the future, but I wouldn't cut down or over prune to "correct" that. It's cosmetic in my opinion.
I wouldn't cut down a tree that might have some disease if it's producing a healthy fruit. There's a LOT of fruit tree diseases out there. You're further ahead, by my line of thinking, to give the tree supplementation to help it be healthier, rather than trust to luck that your next tree just magically won't have disease--as well as losing years of production while you're waiting for that tree to reach production.
To me your tree looks like it's doing good without having a lot of extra resources. I wouldn't mess with it much. If it was me, I'd give it some fish fertilizer and leave it alone otherwise, and enjoy years more fruit. And plant more young trees, because you can't have too many apples!
I think sometimes the best thing to do is wait, observe, and try to learn. What we think is the way things are supposed to be isn't always the only way things work for more natural farming / growing practices (and still often has good yields--like the "escaped" apple trees some people find that give abundant fruit in less than optimal growing conditions, with no pruning.) Sometimes we think we have to fix things that might not actually be a problem.
Have you watched this video about pruning?
I hope you find what works for you.
Joseph Lofthouse wrote:Looks like a normal tree to me. I'd prune it for balance. Other than that, it looks great.
Jester Beapple wrote:My wife and I recently bought a house we have been rehabbing and to my surprise what I thought and the neighbor told me was a crab apple tree, appears to be a real apple tree! The tree has been neglected for many years as if was an old couple that owned the property. I’m trying to find out what kind of apples they are. I’d love to start my own post but I just joined and can’t seem to find where to do so. Needless to say, I apologize for the hijack of the OP’s post. Just looking for help to decifer the type of apple we have.