The subtleties of autumn pruning - what to cut, when and why
With the onset of autumn, the summer chores of gardeners end - everything is grown, preserved, frozen, photographed and posted on Instagram. It's time to put things in order. It is the autumn garden works that are so loved by many gardeners and summer residents - the summer bustle is a thing of the past, and the rustle of falling leaves causes a feeling of calm and measured. Meanwhile, there is still a lot of work in the garden, in particular - there will be pruning of fruit and ornamental trees and shrubs. The autumn pruning of garden crops will be discussed in this article.
What is pruning?
Proper pruning of trees and shrubs is of great importance for the prevention of diseases, maintaining immunity, good growth and fruiting, maintaining the health and attractive appearance of plants. In areas with severe snowy winters, this event is simply necessary for the successful wintering of our plants.
During autumn pruning in the garden, the main rule is that you need to start it after leaf fall, when the plants begin a dormant period and the sap flow stops. And it is necessary to complete before the onset of frost. All procedures - sawing or pruning with pruning shears are carried out in dry weather with clean and sharp tools.
There are several types of trimming, and each of them has its own goals and objectives, and they are performed at different times. Therefore, it is important to understand - what to cut, when and why? After all, illiterate pruning will do more harm than good. First, let's deal with the terms.
Sanitary pruning is carried out both in spring and autumn. This removes all broken, dried up or damaged by disease shoots. It is especially worth paying attention to branches with various thickenings, the so-called galls. In them, the larvae of the gall midge, a dangerous pest of fruit crops, winter. Such branches need to be cut and burned.
Sanitary pruning is necessary for all trees and shrubs without exception.
Thinning trimming has several goals. Removing excess shoots facilitates fruit tree or shrub. Fruits on an unbroken plant are well ventilated and illuminated by the sun, which means they have a large mass and attractive appearance.
In addition, thickening contributes to the emergence of various diseases and pests, and it is quite difficult to process such plantings.
Thinning pruning is also of great importance for successful wintering of plants. The abundance of branches delays the snow, and during heavy snowfalls, real snowdrifts often form in the crowns. In frost, shoots lose their elasticity and often break. Therefore, in preparation for winter, it is necessary to remove excess shoots, especially those growing inside the crown, and spinning tops - young vertically growing shoots.
Forming pruning is used from an early age of the seedling and is aimed at the correct formation of the bush or crown of the tree. The main task of such pruning is to stimulate the most powerful shoots to grow and bear fruit. Along the way, branches that grow in an undesirable direction are completely removed or shortened.
As a result of such pruning, all parts of the plant evenly receive nutrients and sunlight, and, as a result, a properly formed plant easily copes with diseases and pests, winters well, and in summer pleases with an abundant, high-quality crop.
Anti-aging pruning - the release of a tree or shrub from old branches. As a result of such pruning, there is a place for the growth of young shoots, which contributes to an increase in yield, rejuvenation and prolongation of plant life.
When branches are removed by secateurs or hacksaws, wounds remain on the plants, sometimes quite extensive. Many gardeners make a serious mistake, trying to cover up the cut with garden varieties as soon as possible. You should not rush with this. A fresh cut must be treated with copper sulfate, let the surface dry for 1-2 hours, and only then apply a thin layer of garden varnish.
The subtleties of autumn pruning of fruit trees
In central Russia with cold, often unpredictable winters, autumn pruning is undesirable apple trees and pears. During winter frosts, in places where branches are cut, the bark may freeze and the wood may dry out. A heavily trimmed tree from prolonged frosts can simply die.
Therefore, in the fall, fruit trees undergo sanitary pruning, and if necessary, thin out so that snow does not linger in the crown. All other manipulations are left in the spring. This is especially true for young seedlings - they are cut only in the spring.
In regions with a mild climate, where in winter the air temperature does not drop below -5aboutWith you can carry out all types of pruning fruit trees, not only in spring or autumn, but also in winter.
All of the above applies to stone fruit crops. Cherries, sweet cherries, plums, peaches and apricots it is better to prune in early spring, and in autumn to remove only dry and broken branches and basal shoots, which serves as a winter refuge for some insect pests.
Autumn pruning of berry bushes
Berry shrubs spend a lot of energy during the growing season and fruiting. To help them prepare for the new season and extend their life, you need to pay special attention to them in the fall. Fertilizing after fruiting, combating diseases and pests, loosening and timely watering are very important measures for caring for berry bushes, but autumn pruning is an indispensable element of agricultural technology for these crops.
Many fruit shrubs in the spring wake up quite early and you just may not have time to carry out the necessary pruning in the spring. Therefore, in addition to the sanitary, berry and thinning and, if necessary, and anti-aging pruning in the fall.
When autumn pruning of berry bushes, several rules must be observed:
- Do not shorten the shoots - it is better to do this in the spring.
- Cut old or dried branches as close to the ground as possible.
- When cutting branches, do not leave stumps, but cut “onto the ring”.
- Cut all unripe shoots, as they can not stand severe frosts and can damage the winter hardiness of the bush.
- When rejuvenating pruning, make sure that the number of cut shoots does not exceed the number of remaining.
Features raspberry pruning
Favorite raspberries - the first contender for autumn pruning. And then you don’t even have to wait for leaf fall. The fact is that the fruiting of this crop occurs on two-year-old shoots, which will not yield the harvest next year. Therefore, it is desirable to cut them immediately after picking berries.
Then the young shoots will receive more air and sun this year, which means that they will mature better and be able to prepare for wintering and the subsequent abundant fruiting. Thawed shoots are easy to distinguish from young shoots - they are brown in color and break easily.
Repairing raspberry varieties are cut completely after root fall, under the root. In the spring young shoots will grow, on which later berries will appear. Repairing raspberries, unlike ordinary, bear fruit on annual shoots.
Honeysuckle pruning features
Honeysuckle is one of the first to please us with its harvest, so she just needs autumn pruning. In addition, with age, this bush grows strongly, covered with a large number of branches.
When pruning the honeysuckle, you need to remove all shoots and shoots lying on the ground, and thin out the bush itself, cutting out all weak or just extra shoots. The remaining branches cannot be shortened, since the main fruiting of this crop falls on powerful annual shoots.
Features currant pruning
Shoots black currant reduce productivity at the age of 4-5 years, therefore, starting from this age, it is necessary to remove old branches, allowing young shoots to ripen and gain strength.
Red and white currants able to please a good harvest a little longer than black, however, starting from 6-7 years of age, and in these varieties it is necessary to cut old shoots. This is best done in the fall.
Features gooseberry pruning
Gooseberry fruiting begins at the age of 2–3 years and up to 6–7 years of age the bush pleases with a friendly return of fruits. From about this age, bush aging begins.
Carrying out autumn pruning, it is necessary to annually remove old branches and fatliquid shoots that do not give berries. For gooseberries, pruning is very important - a neglected bush begins to hurt and ceases to bear fruit.
Features of autumn pruning fruit vines
Fruit vines have long ceased to be a rarity in our gardens. Today, gardeners successfully grow grapes, lemongrass and actinidia. All these cultures are distinguished by strong sap flow in the spring, therefore they are cut only in the autumn period. Sanitary pruning is combined with forming and rarefying.
Read more about forming grape cuttings in the articles Formation of grapes in the middle lane and to the north and Formation of a grape bush on a high stem.
Trimming ornamental shrubs in autumn
Autumn pruning of ornamental shrubs directly depends on the time of flowering. And if sanitary pruning is carried out in the fall to all shrubs without exception, the formative (with shortened shoots) will not harm only the crops that bloom on the shoots of the current year.
In order not to be mistaken, you need to remember that in the autumn you can only cut shrubs whose flowering occurs in the middle of summer, for example:
- some species of spirea blooming in summer;
- panicle hydrangea;
- buddley of David;
- goose cinquefoil and many others.
I have listed the most common ornamental shrubs that bloom on the shoots of this year. But in fact, their list is much more impressive. If you have ornamental shrubs that you don’t know how to trim and when to trim, it’s best to limit yourself to sanitary pruning in the fall, and spend the main haircut after flowering.
Features pruning rose bushes
In most of the territory of our country, roses hibernate under shelter, so autumn pruning is simply necessary for them. Pruning is carried out in mid-autumn in dry, clear weather. First, all branches growing inside the bush, damaged, weak and unripe shoots are removed. In grafted varieties, all basal shoots are removed.
There are several ways to prune roses - with strong shortening of branches, medium and weak. Most often, gardeners use the second method, cutting off the shoots over the fifth or sixth bud. An important nuance is that the kidney must be outside, otherwise a new shoot will grow inside the bush.
Climbing roses in the fall should not be greatly shortened, it is enough to carry out sanitary pruning and remove flowers and buds.
Dear readers! Autumn pruning of trees and shrubs is a necessary stage in the care of plants. Correctly performed pruning with deadlines contributes to good development, preservation of immunity, increase yield and grooming of the appearance of plants. Therefore, do not ignore this event when it is necessary.