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Caring for newly planted fruit trees

 
Posts: 192
Location: 9A Marion County Fl
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I know little to nothing about fruit trees, thinking it over Im guessing that if Im putting a new fruit tree in the ground I should prob pick of any existing fruit cause Id rather have the tree devote its energies on growing a strong root system versus producing fruit, is this a correct assumption, if so than Ill assume it also stands for fig trees.

What else would it be helpful to know to care for these trees? Is there a basic reference guide that might be helpful and cover some of these seemingly obvious tasks?
 
pollinator
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Location: Utah
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Yes, the general rule is to remove any fruit that might be on the tree when it's transplanted.
 
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Location: Dry mountains Eastern WA
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When I plant new fruit trees I do want them to grow to root first.  I would pick off any existing fruit.  I also cut the tree back; on top; about 6 inches and to an outside bud.  I don’t want the energy yhe first year to go to foliage or stem but to root.
 
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Jason Walter wrote:I should prob pick of any existing fruit cause Id rather have the tree devote its energies on growing a strong root system versus producing fruit, is this a correct assumption, if so than Ill assume it also stands for fig trees.



Yes I believe this is correct.

I will let my newly planted trees flower, and then I pinch off any developing fruits shortly after that so energy does not go into fruit production. I let them blossom in part to help the first pollinators of spring, which are hungry and need all the help they can get. I do not prune my trees the first year. Trees need energy to grow roots, and that energy comes from photosynthesis in the leaves. Pruning off branches reduces the amount of leaves to capture sunlight and grow those roots. Also, all new emerging growth in the early spring comes from stored energy in the trees roots, and the more energy a tree can store in its roots from photosynthesis, the better start it will have the following spring.

What else would it be helpful to know to care for these trees?



I do not recommend fertilizing or adding any compost or organic matters to a hole that a tree is planted in. I just put back in the same soil I dug out. I do add a bacterial & myccohrizahl inoculant in the first watering as I plant the tree, but nothing else. I have poured liquid fish + kelp on the surface of the soil out beyond the planting hole, so there are good minerals in the soil that the roots grow into and find, and upon discovering these minerals it helps encourage more outward root growth. If compost and things are added to the hole, the trees roots love that spot and there is little incentive to grow out beyond. This can result in the roots growing in a circle in the hole possible becoming somewhat potbound, and also the roots have limited exposure to water: the tree will drink the water out of that small area. With the roots growing outward away from the trunk, they grow into more soil and have more water to access for a longer period of time before things begin to dry out. I always mulch around by fruit trees with wood chips making sure not to pile them up around the trunk. This is not only just for covering the newly disturbed soil of the planting hole, but I also go beyond that another 4 or 5 feet in diameter. This helps hold moisture in the soil, at also facilitates fungal soil growth and improves the soil as the wood chips decay, which also encourages outward spreading root growth.

Hope this helps!





 
pollinator
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also remember that figs are very tough and thrive on neglect. yeah, i’d remove fruit so the plant can focus on establishing a root system, but they’ll be giving you good yields pretty quickly even if you don’t do another thing for them beyond getting them in the ground.
 
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if they are still alive/have vitality in them put them in ground and keep watered through winter but not flooded, once a week is good, and if all is well they will sprout leaves in the spring. Marion county is kind of right on edge of where you can distinguish between seasons. they have lots of free local info at county extension office.
 
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