I’ve been working on a batch of plums for the last few years. I prune them every six months – once in spring, and once in fall.
The work is simple. If a branch or section of the trunk is straight, I wire it or remove it. Here are two examples.
After removing the shoots that were too thick to bend
After pruning and wiring the slender shoots – 10″
And here’s the work on a second tree.
Another young tree with long shoots
After cutback and wiring – 9.5″
Even though the work is the same as it was last year, it’s far more fun now that the trees are beginning to resemble bonsai.
The only question going forward is how large I want the trunks to grow. If I want bigger trees, I’ll continue this process for another five to ten years. If I decide to work with smaller trunks, I’ll start focusing on branch ramification in two to three years.
In the meantime, I’ll put the trees back in the sun and let them grow freely until next spring.
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