How to prune an apple tree
Pruning an apple tree is easier than you might think.
Watch our video guide to learn how to do it:
When do we prune apple trees?
Apple trees are best pruned in the winter when there are no leaves on the trees.
Why do we prune apple trees?
The main function of pruning is to keep the centre of the tree open. This gives good air circulation, which reduces the chances of powdery mildew. It also allows light into the centre, which helps to ripen the fruit.
Remember, pruning an apple tree is not about making it smaller. Too much pruning will result in vigorous growth and very little fruit.
Pruning is not essential and anything that you've missed this year can always be corrected next year.
What tools should you use?
What bits do you prune?
Begin by thinning out stems in the centre of the tree to help keep it open. When cutting, always go back to a good, strong branch.
Then remove deadwood to stop diseases spreading back into the trees.
Finally, take out any diseased material such as canker and remove any damaged growths, such as a broken branch.