Managing Your Orchard

The first few years of tending an orchard are the most critical.  Be sure to follow the complete planting instructions, including white washing the trunks to protect from sunburn, installing irrigation and a deer fence; and fertilizing your orchard.  Pruning to train the young trees is essential to establish a strong scaffold of branches to support large crops.  Use the pruning references and/or come to our free pruning workshops.  Once established an orchard will provide years of fresh fruit.  

Links & References


  • Pruning Manual by Dan Lurie, Filoli Gardens Newsletter - This is the best pruning manual we've seen.  Divided into three sections - Principles of Tree Growth, Training Young Trees, and Pruning Mature Trees, published in The Sundial, a newsletter of Filoli Gardens
  • Pruning to Restore an Old, Neglected Apple Tree, by R. L. Stebbins and J. Olsen, Oregon State Univertity - This completes the manual above by showing how to restore an old tree that has not been pruned for years; (hint: it takes a few years).  Follow this simpe, concise guide for good results.  


  • Principles of Grafting and Budding - If you want the full scoop on grafting, the why as well as the how, then this chapter on grafting, posted by UC Davis, is a good, comprehensive overview of grafting principles and techniques.
  • Grafting and Propagating Fruit Trees - This pamphlet by Penn State boils it down to the basics of how to graft using a variety of techniques. ( Good photos, but most professional grafters use a different hold on the knife).
  • Grafting Fruit Trees - This is a useful Power Point presentation by Lloyd Collet of Oregon State University - nice photos of the step-by step processes involved in a variety of grafts.