Cordon fruit trees

  • 8 Replies
  • 1010 Views
*

Potterer

  • New Member
  • *
  • Location: Hertfordshire
  • 19
Cordon fruit trees
« on: November 19, 2017, 18:51 »
Hi. I want to create a permanent bed for some cordon fruit trees. Havenít decided which yet (eating apples, greengage,  pear, perhaps quince???). I have thought of having a 12 by 4 foot bed and attaching the cordons to wire at 45 degree angles. The nurseries seem to say that you could put them 2-3 feet apart. So ....given they grow to about 6 foot high, how many will fit in that length of bed (maths was never my strong point!)??

Actually any advice or thoughts about growing cordons (or minarettes, or espaliers) would be fantastic

*

Goosegirl

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Location: Thurnham, Lancashire
  • 5847
Re: Cordon fruit trees
« Reply #1 on: November 20, 2017, 14:06 »
Best place to look is on the RHS website or in one of their books(Pruning and Training Fruit) as they have diagrams with pruning advice. Maths is the only exam I've ever failed (though I did pass the next time round) but doing a drawing of your bed length you'll probably only get five trees at the most in that space. Another thing to consider is whether the varieties you choose are self-fertile or not and what dwarfing root-stock they're grafted onto.
To fail is a step up on the ladder of wisdom.

*

Lardman

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Location: Worcestershire
  • 6807
Re: Cordon fruit trees
« Reply #2 on: November 20, 2017, 17:31 »
I have thought of having a 12 by 4 foot bed and attaching the cordons to wire at 45 degree angles. The nurseries seem to say that you could put them 2-3 feet apart. So ....given they grow to about 6 foot high, how many will fit in that length of bed (maths was never my strong point!)??

The lean doesn't matter the distance between them stays the same but the starting point to keep them in the bed alters ;) at 45 degrees you're 6' vertical would also take 6' horizontal (which I make an 8'4" tree).  You'd have 6ft of dead space an the end of the row under the tree if you want to keep things to a full height, if you add another tree in at 45 degs you'd have to finish it at 4' at the side of the row rather than the top.

Actually any advice or thoughts about growing cordons (or minarettes, or espaliers) would be fantastic

I've been playing with apples/pears in restricted forms for a couple of years now - what info were you looking for?
I'm the person the monsters under your bed are hiding from.


*

Potterer

  • New Member
  • *
  • Location: Hertfordshire
  • 19
Re: Cordon fruit trees
« Reply #3 on: November 21, 2017, 16:11 »
Thanks for all these comments, very helpful. Lardman, I guess I struggle a bit to know whats what even though I have been looking things up. Are cordons a form of espalier, are minarettes a small version of a cordon tree? Mostly I was wondering what might be the most straightforward form for an allotment (and for someone who isn't experienced in the pruning needed for these forms)?

*

Lardman

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Location: Worcestershire
  • 6807
Re: Cordon fruit trees
« Reply #4 on: November 21, 2017, 18:10 »
Cordon - Hairy pole.
Minarette - Pole with designer stubble.  Brand-name cordon  ::) .
Espalier - Pole with long arms.

It depends on what you want from your trees as to what form to pick. Pruning is as easy or as difficult as you want to make it so that shouldn't impact your decision. Your space allocation however will restrict you, you'd be pushing it with just 2 espalier trees.

If you want lots of varieties or types (apples, pears, plums) in a 12' space you'll need to use cordons (Id do vertical rather than oblique) and select your varieties carefully. Most plums/gages are tip bearing and wont take kindly to formal pruning as are most early apples. You'll also have a low yield from each tree around maxing out at 5kgs per tree so don't expect boxes of apples in the shed lasting for months.

If you're happy with just 3 trees consider growing as central leader on dwarfing rootstock, higher yield, less initial cost and less pruning. It's not as pretty (and there's no satisfaction of a nicely pruned tree) but it's probably the most effective way to grow on an allotment.

Don't forget Frankentree's though, (or family trees to be more official) where multiple varieties are grafted on to one single tree.  You could increase the varieties 3 fold easily - it all depends on what you want.  :nowink:

It's a problem which doesn't go away - as I turn more veg space over to fruit trees I have the same arguments with myself each time over how best to grow them.  :nowink:  :blush:

*

Potterer

  • New Member
  • *
  • Location: Hertfordshire
  • 19
Re: Cordon fruit trees
« Reply #5 on: November 21, 2017, 21:34 »
Really Love the descriptions Lardman! Sorry to be dense but what do you mean by growing as central leader?

*

Lardman

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Location: Worcestershire
  • 6807
Re: Cordon fruit trees
« Reply #6 on: November 22, 2017, 10:39 »
.. what do you mean by growing as central leader?

Here's a reasonable description https://www.quickcrop.co.uk/blog/introduction-pruning-apple-trees/ it refers to apples but all top fruit can be treated the same.

*

Goosegirl

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Location: Thurnham, Lancashire
  • 5847
Re: Cordon fruit trees
« Reply #7 on: November 22, 2017, 15:24 »
I've seen step-over apple trees which you can literally step over, so you could theoretically plant them at the front of your bed but I don't know how productive they are or if they will intrude on the other trees.

*

engineer

  • Experienced Member
  • ***
  • Location: doncaster
  • 230
Re: Cordon fruit trees
« Reply #8 on: November 22, 2017, 17:26 »
Hi Pottere, can I suggest this site to you, www.chrisbowers.co.uk they have the most comprehensive list of soft fruit trees and plants that I have ever seen, with over 130 apple varieties available, if you look here I am certain it will whet your appetite. Also answers many questions for beginners about pollination requirements.
« Last Edit: November 22, 2017, 19:12 by engineer »



xx
Apple cordon trees

Started by londongardener on Grow Your Own

2 Replies
2884 Views
Last post October 23, 2007, 21:12
by richyrich7
xx
When to prune cordon apple trees.

Started by SusieB on Grow Your Own

3 Replies
3572 Views
Last post November 13, 2009, 18:26
by SusieB
xx
Soft Fruit Cordon

Started by thatshallot on Grow Your Own

5 Replies
1233 Views
Last post February 14, 2015, 11:35
by Comfr3y
xx
Poor quality soil and fruit trees /soft fruit

Started by londongardener on Grow Your Own

5 Replies
1933 Views
Last post February 04, 2008, 11:40
by Ruth Cross
 

Page created in 0.268 seconds with 34 queries.

Powered by SMFPacks SEO Pro Mod |