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Care of Ballerina apple tree



 
 
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  #1  
Old 02-05-2007, 03:45 PM posted to uk.rec.gardening
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Posts: 4
Default Care of Ballerina apple tree

My 5 year old Ballerina apple tree (Polka on MM106 rootstock) has gots lots
of side shoots this year but narry a blossom in sight. Last year I fed it
some blood/bone meal but nothing this year. Should I prune the side shoots,
some of which are quite long or just leave as is and hope that next year is
better? The tree fruited fine for the first 2 years of planting.
Thanks
Joe


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  #2  
Old 03-05-2007, 09:32 PM posted to uk.rec.gardening
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Posts: 22
Default Care of Ballerina apple tree

Joe K wrote:
My 5 year old Ballerina apple tree (Polka on MM106 rootstock) has gots lots
of side shoots this year but narry a blossom in sight. Last year I fed it
some blood/bone meal but nothing this year. Should I prune the side shoots,
some of which are quite long or just leave as is and hope that next year is
better? The tree fruited fine for the first 2 years of planting.
Thanks
Joe



Hi Joe,

Are they the same as the 'Minarette' fruit trees I got from Ken Muir
(tall and columnar)?
If so, according to the instructions I got:

Main stem leader (top bit) prune in Winter/early spring.
Cut back 1/3 to 1/2 of last year's growth. Cut back to a bud.
Once the tree's at the required height cut the leader back to 1cm from
the point of growth (in Winter)

Side shoots. If less than 8 inches, don't prune otherwise prune back to
about 3 leaves above the basal cluster in the summer.
Any shoots arising from existing shoots should be cut back to one leaf
beyond the basal cluster (2-4 small closely spaced leaves at the bottom
of the shoot).

If you'd like a copy of the full instructions I could scan them and
email them to you.

Good Luck,

Jeff
NE England
  #3  
Old 03-05-2007, 10:26 PM posted to uk.rec.gardening
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First recorded activity by GardenBanter: Feb 2007
Location: South Wales
Posts: 2,410
Default Care of Ballerina apple tree

On 3 May, 20:32, Jeff Taylor
wrote:
Joe K wrote:
My 5 year old Ballerina apple tree (Polka on MM106 rootstock) has gots lots
of side shoots this year but narry a blossom in sight. Last year I fed it
some blood/bone meal but nothing this year. Should I prune the side shoots,
some of which are quite long or just leave as is and hope that next year is
better? The tree fruited fine for the first 2 years of planting.
Thanks
Joe


Hi Joe,

Are they the same as the 'Minarette' fruit trees I got from Ken Muir
(tall and columnar)?
If so, according to the instructions I got:

Main stem leader (top bit) prune in Winter/early spring.
Cut back 1/3 to 1/2 of last year's growth. Cut back to a bud.
Once the tree's at the required height cut the leader back to 1cm from
the point of growth (in Winter)

Side shoots. If less than 8 inches, don't prune otherwise prune back to
about 3 leaves above the basal cluster in the summer.
Any shoots arising from existing shoots should be cut back to one leaf
beyond the basal cluster (2-4 small closely spaced leaves at the bottom
of the shoot).

If you'd like a copy of the full instructions I could scan them and
email them to you.

Good Luck,

Jeff
NE England


I always understood that if you pruned Ballerina trees they would
loose the "Pole" habit and start to bush.


"Ballerina Apples

Originally referred to as 'pole trees', this range of trees has been
produced in conjunction with East Malling Research Station and the
whole is called 'Ballerina'. The growth of Ballerina trees is such
that they make very short side breaks and hence no pruning is
necessary. So far six cultivars have evolved from crossing the
original sport with the latest and best type of varieties from E.M.

All Ballerina trees this season are available on MM106. Due to their
compact potential, growth will only reach 8ft. after five years of
growth, hence advantages are no pruning, no staking, easy to spray and
easy to pick. Ideal for upright pillar, garden ornamentation (i.e.
either side of entrances), plus a host of other applications.

David Hill
Abacus Nurseries

  #4  
Old 05-05-2007, 01:51 AM posted to uk.rec.gardening
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Posts: 142
Default Care of Ballerina apple tree

Joe,
I am in danger of repeating what others have said so my appologies.

The Ballerina types were bred by HRI East Malling as compact trees,
with little side growth / fruiting spurs - the rootstock should have
little bearing on them, although I know they do not perform on M27.
Your Polka came from a cross between Golden Delicious x McIntosh
Wijcik. So warm summers serve it well.
The pruning of them is in essence summer pruning. Summer pruning in
the books is late July / August, for me it is later - End August /
early September. Why? - because the early pruing, for me, results in
secondary growth.
As Jeff says - for the side shoots cut initially to three leaves
beyond the basal cluster - that being the initial group of leaves at
the base of the spur / side shoot. Any growth from this in subsequent
years is pruned to one leaf beyond the basal cluster. If the spur
gets too long or complicated, reduce it.
As far as reducing the main leader goes - the genreal advice is to
reduce by 1/3rd. If there has been little growth - reduce by 1/2 to
stimulate growth. This is done late winter / spring, before bud
burst.
When the trees are supplied they are propably 2 or 3 year old and
should not be allowed to fruit intil they are 4/5 year old. Early
fruiting does have a negative effect on sbsequent fruiting. Estimate
the age of the tree by looking at the pruning cuts made - from the
graft, follow the leader up - looking for evidence of cuts. Should
provide an indication of age.
As for fruiting - you only want one apple every 4 inches - so thin the
fruit after the June drop to achieve this. Over cropping could lead
to biennial bearing, where by the tree fruits well one year then has
an off year the next. Thinning the fruit helps to prevent this from
occuring.
Regards
Clifford
Bawtry, Doncaster, South Yorkshire

  #5  
Old 07-05-2007, 05:05 PM posted to uk.rec.gardening
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Posts: 4
Default Care of Ballerina apple tree

Thanks to everyone for the very detailed and comprehensive responses to my
question. I will now put a reminder in my diary to prune the side shoots
back in August (which everyone seems to agree on) and hope that next year is
more productive.
Many thanks to all
Joe
"cliff_the_gardener" wrote in message
oups.com...
Joe,
I am in danger of repeating what others have said so my appologies.

The Ballerina types were bred by HRI East Malling as compact trees,
with little side growth / fruiting spurs - the rootstock should have
little bearing on them, although I know they do not perform on M27.
Your Polka came from a cross between Golden Delicious x McIntosh
Wijcik. So warm summers serve it well.
The pruning of them is in essence summer pruning. Summer pruning in
the books is late July / August, for me it is later - End August /
early September. Why? - because the early pruing, for me, results in
secondary growth.
As Jeff says - for the side shoots cut initially to three leaves
beyond the basal cluster - that being the initial group of leaves at
the base of the spur / side shoot. Any growth from this in subsequent
years is pruned to one leaf beyond the basal cluster. If the spur
gets too long or complicated, reduce it.
As far as reducing the main leader goes - the genreal advice is to
reduce by 1/3rd. If there has been little growth - reduce by 1/2 to
stimulate growth. This is done late winter / spring, before bud
burst.
When the trees are supplied they are propably 2 or 3 year old and
should not be allowed to fruit intil they are 4/5 year old. Early
fruiting does have a negative effect on sbsequent fruiting. Estimate
the age of the tree by looking at the pruning cuts made - from the
graft, follow the leader up - looking for evidence of cuts. Should
provide an indication of age.
As for fruiting - you only want one apple every 4 inches - so thin the
fruit after the June drop to achieve this. Over cropping could lead
to biennial bearing, where by the tree fruits well one year then has
an off year the next. Thinning the fruit helps to prevent this from
occuring.
Regards
Clifford
Bawtry, Doncaster, South Yorkshire



 




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