In our apple orchards in the tropics the endless season would result in
whips 12'+ tall if we didn't intervene.  

I'd cut them back to 5' tall and notch above every bud to encourage
lateral branching; this should have been done in April when they just
started to push. I'd probably still do this now, though I'm open to hearing
from others why you shouldn't.

Kevin Hauser
Kuffel Creek Apple Nursery
Riverside, California 
Nakifuma, Uganda

 On Mon, 3 Jul 2017 16:25:04 -0500, Doug Nelson
<> wrote:
> Forgot to mention the picture I have attached is an example of one of
> poorly feather trees. My wires are two feet apart so you can see that
> tree is almost seven foot tall.
> On Jul 3, 2017 4:22 PM, Doug Nelson <>
> wrote:
> I'm in my second year of growing apples. This year we planted 5000 apple
> trees tall spindle style. These will be used for upick.
> The nursery I bought from gave me about a thousand terrible trees with
> almost no feathers.
> I have sprayed heavily with Maxell to encourage lateral bud growth. Has
> work that well.
> My Orchard is located right next to one of the Chicagolands largest
> commercial tree nurseries. The field manager of the nursery recently
> stopped by and told me he would encourage lateral growth by heading all
> these poorly feathered trees.
> I know the rule with tall spindle is generally you never had the tree,
> I think the assumption  is that you have a lot of feathers.
> Has anyone ever headed poorly feather trees to encourage lateral growth?
> What were your results?
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