dormant season (photo at right). I was very interested to see how the tree reacted to my earlier pruning cuts and just where and how the new branch growth would develop in the spring.
As you can see, the short lateral branches I left on the lower portion of the tree burst forth grew over two feet in length. At the top of the tree, I still have a central leader but several strong lateral branches have developed just below. These are growing rapidly and are starting to compete with the leader for sunlight. In the middle portion of the main trunk, I have some lateral branches forming but they growing with less vigor. To shape this tree further, I made several summer pruning cuts to help direct the trees growth into the summer.
The red arrow points to a shoot that originated from a bud on the main trunk. This shoot has grown nearly two feet in length, so I decided to pinch out the terminal and force the branch to pause it's extension growth, mature remaining leaves, and build shoot diameter.
These were not the only lateral branches I pruned. I made similar cuts to lateral shoots around the entire tree.
2-foot rule and pruned the terminals of lateral branches below the central leader. I also spent some time to remove all the stalked buds I found growing in each leaf axil on the central leader. Red arrows in the photo at left point to several of these stalked buds and the comparison photo shows the central leader after all the buds have been removed.