Apple @ Pear Trees #192312 - Ask Extension

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Apple @ Pear Trees #192312

Asked June 18, 2014, 9:04 PM EDT

I'm new to these trees. all my trees are semi dwarf. I have an Ayers and a Duchess Pear. They are over 5 years old, 9ft tall and 3-4 inch trunks. Ayers has a very light crop and as of today are only 3/8 inch in size. Duchess is small crop and same size fruit. Any problem? I have three Apple trees. All are 7 ft tall and trunk is between 2-3 inches. Honeycrisp seems to be ok, heavy crop and fruit size is 2 inches. Golden Grimes and Stayman Winesap are heavy and I've thinned and pruned them at least 4 times to date. Fruit is only 1/2 in size. Trees did this last year and never got bigger, but I didn't thin or prune trees last year. Any problem?

Jackson County Oregon

Expert Response

Sounds like your pear trees just need a better pollinizer. Try planting a Bartlett pear which is a good pollen source. Your trees sound like they are growing pretty well at the size you describe. With the apples just try thinning the fruit earlier. The best time to do it is within 40 days after petal fall. At that time thin apples to 6 inches apart and only one apple per spur. That may require you to thin all the fruit off of some spurs. If your fruit stays small you may need to water and fertilize a little more. To get good fruit size you need to combine thinning, timely fertilization to get good vigor in your plants, and regular water (1-2" of water a week in June-July-August) to push the fruit size.
Steve Renquist Replied June 23, 2014, 2:27 PM EDT

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