User avatar
Stephen111725
Full Member
Posts: 47
Joined: Thu May 12, 2016 9:45 pm
Location: Zone 6

Apple Tree in container falling over

My apple tree is very tall and skinny and it falls over without intervention and no matter which way I turn it it is always crooked. How do I fix it ?
Attachments
2016-08-22 18.26.23.jpg

User avatar
rainbowgardener
Super Green Thumb
Posts: 25303
Joined: Sun Feb 15, 2009 11:04 pm
Location: TN/GA 7b

Re: Tree falling over

I'm not sure, but if you put APPLE tree in your subject line, you are more likely to catch the eye of JONA our resident professional orchardist. :)
Twitter account I manage for local Sierra Club: https://twitter.com/CherokeeGroupSC Facebook page I manage for them: https://www.facebook.com/groups/65310596576/ Come and find me and lots of great information, inspiration

User avatar
applestar
Mod
Posts: 27899
Joined: Thu May 01, 2008 11:21 pm
Location: Zone 6, NJ (3/M)4/E ~ 10/M

Re: Apple Tree in container falling over

I re-phrased the subject line and moved the discussion to Fruit Forum :wink:
Learning never ends because we can share what we've learned. And in sharing our collective experiences, we gain deeper understanding of what we learned.

JONA
Mod
Posts: 806
Joined: Fri Jul 25, 2014 11:11 am
Location: Sussex. England

Re: Apple Tree in container falling over

Hi Stephen,
I'm assuming that you want to keep your tree in a pot?
So....first question, do you know what rootstock its on?

If it is on a dwarfing stock then this winter you will have to cut that leader back about a foot.
When you make the cut ..cut it to just above a bud that is facing back towards the bend...this will start to get the tree back into line, as well as making side shoots develope down the trunk.
As to it falling over.
I'm afraid that it's always going to be top heavy unless you get it into a much larger, heavy pot. Unless, of course, you can get a more substantial stake into the ground beside the pot.
Remember, once the tree is carrying a crop it will be even more top heavy.
If the tree is not on a dwarfing stock then you may struggle to keep it pot bound as it would need very careful pruning and care to keep it under control.
Do you know the variety?
John

User avatar
Stephen111725
Full Member
Posts: 47
Joined: Thu May 12, 2016 9:45 pm
Location: Zone 6

Re: Apple Tree in container falling over

JONA wrote:Hi Stephen,
I'm assuming that you want to keep your tree in a pot?
So....first question, do you know what rootstock its on?

If it is on a dwarfing stock then this winter you will have to cut that leader back about a foot.
When you make the cut ..cut it to just above a bud that is facing back towards the bend...this will start to get the tree back into line, as well as making side shoots develope down the trunk.
As to it falling over.
I'm afraid that it's always going to be top heavy unless you get it into a much larger, heavy pot. Unless, of course, you can get a more substantial stake into the ground beside the pot.
Remember, once the tree is carrying a crop it will be even more top heavy.
If the tree is not on a dwarfing stock then you may struggle to keep it pot bound as it would need very careful pruning and care to keep it under control.
Do you know the variety?
I don't know anything about rootstock and could you explain how exactly to be pruning this?

User avatar
applestar
Mod
Posts: 27899
Joined: Thu May 01, 2008 11:21 pm
Location: Zone 6, NJ (3/M)4/E ~ 10/M

Re: Apple Tree in container falling over

Where did it come from? Did you buy it as a container tree? Did it have a tag/label?
Learning never ends because we can share what we've learned. And in sharing our collective experiences, we gain deeper understanding of what we learned.

JONA
Mod
Posts: 806
Joined: Fri Jul 25, 2014 11:11 am
Location: Sussex. England

Re: Apple Tree in container falling over

Ah!
Most fruit trees are not grown on their own roots. If they were you could never be sure how vigorous or how tall they would grow.
So, trees are grafted onto a root system that we know how strong or weak it is.
These stocks carry a number that should be on the label that's attached to the tree when you buy it.
However.....if you do not have the label..then it's anyone's guess.
Now pruning.
Don't cut anything in the summer months. If you did the tree would just grow all the more.
Leave it until the leaves have all fallen of in the fall and then post a picture on this board and then we can try to help you prune it.
John

ACW
Senior Member
Posts: 153
Joined: Mon Sep 13, 2010 11:20 am
Location: London

Re: Apple Tree in container falling over

Jona
there will be photos come october from Highbury .
we have a Katy on dwarf root stock ,that needs a prune
I originally had it in a pot for a few years,then transfered to my tiny garden where it produces more most years .
A gardener with a small shady back garden and a balcony with containers ,
biggest problem not enough sunshine !

User avatar
Stephen111725
Full Member
Posts: 47
Joined: Thu May 12, 2016 9:45 pm
Location: Zone 6

Re: Apple Tree in container falling over

JONA wrote:Ah!
Most fruit trees are not grown on their own roots. If they were you could never be sure how vigorous or how tall they would grow.
So, trees are grafted onto a root system that we know how strong or weak it is.
These stocks carry a number that should be on the label that's attached to the tree when you buy it.
However.....if you do not have the label..then it's anyone's guess.
Now pruning.
Don't cut anything in the summer months. If you did the tree would just grow all the more.
Leave it until the leaves have all fallen of in the fall and then post a picture on this board and then we can try to help you prune it.
Uh I didn't buy it I planted a seed in paper cup and now it's big.

JONA
Mod
Posts: 806
Joined: Fri Jul 25, 2014 11:11 am
Location: Sussex. England

Re: Apple Tree in container falling over

Stephen111725 wrote:
JONA wrote:Ah!
Most fruit trees are not grown on their own roots. If they were you could never be sure how vigorous or how tall they would grow.
So, trees are grafted onto a root system that we know how strong or weak it is.
These stocks carry a number that should be on the label that's attached to the tree when you buy it.
However.....if you do not have the label..then it's anyone's guess.
Now pruning.
Don't cut anything in the summer months. If you did the tree would just grow all the more.
Leave it until the leaves have all fallen of in the fall and then post a picture on this board and then we can try to help you prune it.
Uh I didn't buy it I planted a seed in paper cup and now it's big.
That means it's a seedling.
So it is your variety...you can call it what you want as you can only know one of the parents....the apple you took the pip from.
It's therefore on its own roots. Nothing wrong with that except there is no way of telling how big or small it will grow.
I would think though that it in all probability will be too strong for your pot. Only time will tell.
John

User avatar
Stephen111725
Full Member
Posts: 47
Joined: Thu May 12, 2016 9:45 pm
Location: Zone 6

Re: Apple Tree in container falling over

JONA wrote:
Stephen111725 wrote:
JONA wrote:Ah!
Most fruit trees are not grown on their own roots. If they were you could never be sure how vigorous or how tall they would grow.
So, trees are grafted onto a root system that we know how strong or weak it is.
These stocks carry a number that should be on the label that's attached to the tree when you buy it.
However.....if you do not have the label..then it's anyone's guess.
Now pruning.
Don't cut anything in the summer months. If you did the tree would just grow all the more.
Leave it until the leaves have all fallen of in the fall and then post a picture on this board and then we can try to help you prune it.
Uh I didn't buy it I planted a seed in paper cup and now it's big.
That means it's a seedling.
So it is your variety...you can call it what you want as you can only know one of the parents....the apple you took the pip from.
It's therefore on its own roots. Nothing wrong with that except there is no way of telling how big or small it will grow.
I would think though that it in all probability will be too strong for your pot. Only time will tell.
So what should I do to keep it upright and would planting other things in there be a good idea? Maybe grass?

User avatar
applestar
Mod
Posts: 27899
Joined: Thu May 01, 2008 11:21 pm
Location: Zone 6, NJ (3/M)4/E ~ 10/M

Re: Apple Tree in container falling over

Well, looking at the photo you posted, the bamboo stake you have looks too skinny to support the apple and being in a pot, the stake just isn't stable enough. So what I would do is move the pot closer to the edge of the paved area and drive two, sturdier stakes into the dirt -- one on either side of the pot. Then cross tie the apple to the two stakes so that it is kept upright but also has a bit of freedom to move around -- this will encourage it to develop a stronger structure.

The thin bamboo stake can be used to help straighten the trunk while it is still flexible -- use soft wide ties in several places to snugly tie it straight -- this needs to be checked often so the tree isn't getting strangled.

In fact, if you do this, then you can cross tie the BAMBOO to the sturdy stakes, which will allow you to use tighter knots on the bamboo without hurting the apple.
Learning never ends because we can share what we've learned. And in sharing our collective experiences, we gain deeper understanding of what we learned.

Return to “Apple Forum”