How do you prune peach trees?


Quick Answer

Start pruning a peach tree when the buds form. Remove dead and damaged branches, remove old shoots and suckers, thin out the branches and prune the top of tree. This takes about an hour to complete. You need a pair of pruning shears.

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How do you prune peach trees?
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Full Answer

  1. Remove dead, damaged and diseased branches

    Remove any dead, damaged or diseased branches. Only new wood produces fruit. Start pruning right as the buds start to form.

  2. Remove old shoots and suckers

    Remove shoots that are gray. These are old and do not produce fruit. Allow new shoots, which are a healthy red color, to stay. Using hands or pruning shears, remove the suckers at the base of the trunk.

  3. Thin out the branches

    Thin out the branches on the tree, which allows light and air to reach the center of the tree. Choose several main branches with an angle of 45 degrees to keep, and remove the rest. You want the tree to have a natural vase shape. Remove the extremely thin and spindly branches.

  4. Prune the top of the tree

    Prune the top of the branches to a height that is comfortable during harvesting. Remove up to 40 percent of the branches each year. This encourages new growth and fruiting in subsequent years.

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