Forming and cutting cherries.
Of all the species of fruit trees grown in our country, the cherry is the most sensitive to pruning. Even small wounds after cut off shoots are often the cause of infection of trees by bacterial cherry cancer. For the sake of the health of the trees, it would be best not to cut trees at all. Unfortunately, in some circumstances it is necessary to cut the sweet cherry. Pruning is done in the first year after the trees are planted in the orchard in order to give them shape and facilitate their adoption. In older fruiting cherry orchards, cuts are made to regulate tree size and crown density. Cherry trees grow to a considerable size, so the crowns have to be lowered sometimes (for example, when an orchard needs to be screened with a net to protect it from birds).
Lynx. Natural cherry shape.
In cherry orchards, natural circular crowns are usually derived, which in old age are trimmed as needed. In recent years, the cultivation of lane-type sweet cherries has become popular in Europe. This form makes it easier to pick the fruit and therefore deserves attention.
Formation of natural circular crowns
We form circular crowns in orchards if the spacing between the rows of trees is from 6 do 8 m. The pruning of young trees must be limited to the necessary minimum. Branched specimens need to be trimmed from the bottom to a height of at least 0,5 m. In the case of sweet cherries, it is not worth forming branches low just above the ground, because flower buds freeze easily on them. In order not to expose trees to infection by bacterial cancer, it is possible not to shorten the conductors or the left side shoots. In order to facilitate the adoption of trees, instead of cutting them, they can be watered 2-3 times in the spring with a better result than when cutting. (Lynx.).
Lynx. The correct crown of sweet cherries was formed despite the fact that the maiden was not trimmed after planting.
Unbranched specimens can also be left uncut and watered as needed if they are relatively small, that is, they have to 120 cm in height. Taller specimens need to be cut at a height of approx 1 m above the ground.
If, after planting in the orchard, the maiden trees are not pruned, over the summer they produce few side shoots and these shoots grow on the guide at a wide angle. Such growth of maiden trees is very beneficial. This is because a crown is created with loose limbs and wide angles of bifurcations, which prevents the development of bacterial cancer in the bifurcations. Unfortunately, many maiden trees planted in the orchard are 1.5-2.0 m high and require pruning, for a crown to form approximately 1,0 m from the ground. Also in the second and third years of the tree's life, the guidebook must sometimes be shortened, to get it to branch. After cutting, it grows up to five side shoots, wherein 2 or 3 shoots form sharp angles of bifurcation. In that case, you need to delete 1 or 2 shoots with sharp angles or bend them, if they are not too stiff (Lynx.).
Lynx. Bending the cherry shoots in order to correct the bifurcation angles.
Shoots should be tied to pins. Formed in sequence 3 years, the crown should be loose and have wide bifurcation angles.