Pruning of Fruit Crop
Pruning is an important horticultural practiuse. The knowledge of which is essential or the grower, since unscrupulous pruning any result in more harm than good.
According to Gardner, pruning may be defined “as an art or science of cutting away a portion of plant to improve the quality of the product or to heal / repair the injury, the parts commonly removed are branches or leaves or both, obviously pruning is a subtraction process.”
The extent and intensity of pruning on the same tree varies from year to year, depending on the growth of the tree, its bearing and season. The following are the main objectives of pruning.
1. To extent and intensity of pruning on the same tree varies from year to year, depending on the growth of the tree, its bearing and season. The following are the main objectives of pruning:
1. To maintain the growth and vigor f the trees and to maintain a balance between the vegetative vigour and fruitfulness, so as to be conductive for production of optimum crop of best quality.
2. To regulate the size and quality of fruit by way of proper distributions of the fruiting area.
3. To regulate the succession of crop.
4. To spread the tree for convenience of economy in orchard management.
Principles of Pruning:
1. Excessive pruning should be avoided as it affects the growth of the plant by ‘dwarfening ‘and may induce more of eater suckers fascination and thus effect the bearing potential.
2. In pruning only that wood which is not necessary for the tree should be removed.
3. Pruning of large limbs should be avoided as far as possible.
4. Pruning of young trees should be done more carefully than they yielding trees since serve pruning of young tree to going to dely the cropping and much since serve pruning of young trees raging to delay the cropping and much more yielding area will be removed than what is desired.
5. Each branch or part pruned or removed should be considered as a potential bearing area and certain amount or food prepared the plants is reduced through such removed part.
Methods of Pruning:
1. Thinning Out:
This refers to the removal of the branches entirely from its base leaving no stubs.
2. Heating Back:
This refers to pruning or cutting of main stem or all or few of the branches leaving a basal portion. This method is often followed for hedges, ornamental shrubs, first dormant pruning and October pruning in grapes.
3. Disbudding or Rubbing off:
Here the young buds are nipped without giving then the change to sprout. The buds may be either Vegative or reproductive. This is practiced regularly in flowering plants to make the terminal bud to give a bigger flower.
4. Pinching and Topping:
This refers to the removal of the tip of the shoot alone with a view to stimulate mildly the lateral growth; this is practiced regularly in coffee to remove the apical dominance and to allow the side branches to grow vigouresely. e. g Deshi cotton.