Thursday, June 22, 2006

Helping the Apple Tree

This apple tree was a mess. It had become more and more crooked over the past few years. Finally it was time to do something about it! At least it didn't have a bird's nest in it like our peach tree from a few days ago.

I was able to drive a stake and put some ties on it to hold it straight. These are the metal wire ties that go through a rubber tube. The rubber protects the tree from injury. I used to use clothsline, but the tree grew right around the clothsline and girdled itself. Be careful of that! Thats probably why I hesitated so long to fix these trees.

After I got the tree straight, I had another problem - the branches had adjusted the the leaning tree. Now that the trunk was straight, most of the branches were leaning to the left. I had to try to spread them back out so some will grow to the right. I would like to get some plastic limb spreaders, but until then, I used a second stake and some more wire/rubber ties. It works, but it aint pretty!

The limb spreaders I'm talking about can be found where trees are sold, but the ones I've looked at are from Stark Brothers, where I bought my trees. I have heard that they are stronger than most, and come in several lengths.

Please let me know if you have used limb spreaders and if you've had success with them. I'll let you know if I get them, but my make-shift spreaders are working for now.


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