Some commercial orchards in England keep apple trees in a columnar form. It is a very original form, because such a crown has no branches at all, and only the guide is covered with small fruiting branches. Branches cannot develop, because only one-year-old shoots and two-and-three-year-old twigs are left on the guidebook each year, and all the old ones are deleted.
Picture. The lower part of the apple tree columnar crown; you can see knots after cutting and young shoots growing directly on the guide.
The columnar form is suitable only for these apple varieties, which bear fruit on young shoots like: Jonatan, Idared, Golden Delicious, Orange Coke, Cortland or Melba. The most suitable are trees grafted on M half-dwarf rootstocks 7 i MM 106, which are planted in the orchard at a distance 4 m row from row and 1,5-2,0 m in a row. Planted annuals are shortened in height 80 cm from the ground. If the occultants have branching, it leaves itself 2-3 lower shoots, and the rest are cut very short on 1 mesh. In the second year, he leaves again 3 weak shoots on the conductor with wide bifurcation angles. Shoots stronger, forming sharp angles of bifurcations are shortened to 1 eyelet or removes. The procedure for the third year is similar to that for the second year. In the fourth or fifth year after planting the trees, the lowest twigs on the tree begin to bear fruit. After fruiting, the twigs are removed, cutting them off at a distance of approx 1 cm from the guide. Every year, renewing cuts have been made since then. In spring, all branches are cut, which have over 3 patch. Each of them is cut, leaving a suppository. Twigs of two- and three-year-olds remain as fruiting elements. On two-year-old twigs, however, the axial annual increments are cut off. Annual shoots are thinned this way, to 1 m the current guide there were no more than 10.
In the first years after planting trees, a renewal cut is made only in the lower part of the crown, because the top part is being formed. After molding is complete, when the trees reach 3 m in height, renewal cutting can be made on the whole tree.
Keeping the apple tree in the form of a column is an interesting solution to the age-old problem of regulating the size of trees in orchards. Thanks to the restoration cut, the crowns are of a constant size, do not increase. Varieties prone to fruiting on annual shoots yield well in this form 30-40 kg of apples from the tree per year. Seat 800-1000 trees on 1 ha, you can get apple yields ranging from 25 do 40 t / ha.