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Horticulture and Home Pest News
Horticulture & Home Pest News is filled with articles on current horticulture, plant care, pest management, and common household pests written by Iowa State University Extension specialists in the Departments of Entomology, Horticulture and Plant Pathology.

Hand Thinning of Fruit Trees

This article was published originally on 5/25/2001

Fruit trees loaded with fruit should be hand thinned to

  1. obtain large, high quality fruit at harvest;
  2. allow development of flower buds for next year's crop, thus overcoming the tendency for some fruit trees to bear fruit in alternate years; and
  3. prevent limb breakage.

Hand thinning of apples should be done within 6 weeks of full bloom or by approximately mid-June. Leave the largest apple in a cluster unless it is damaged. After thinning, the apples should be spaced about 8 to 10 inches apart on the branches. Pears, plums, and apricots should be spaced about 6 to 8 inches apart on the branches.



This article originally appeared in the May 25, 2001 issue, p. 63.

Year of Publication: 
2001
Issue: 
IC-485(12) -- May 25, 2001