Fruit Tree Maintenance

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If you are the new owner of fruit trees, you may already have enjoyed some delicious berries or apples and put some away for winter. Fruit trees are an investment that pays off in beauty and food, but they do require some special care, particularly in the fall. You need to carefully prepare them for winter so that they produce healthy, beautiful fruit for decades.

Basic Care

You may not realize that you need to continue your watering practices into mid-October. Even when the temperatures are not particularly hot, you need to regularly give your trees two to three inches of water so their roots will have enough moisture in the winter. You also need to cut the grass underneath the trees and remove the fallen leaves. These leaves can carry diseases harmful to your fruit trees, and they tend to attract mice, another possible problem.

Sun Scald

Sun scald is a dangerous affliction for your fruit trees. The bright sunshine in the winter makes the trunks nice and warm, but when the sun sets and the temperature plunges, the sudden change in temperature can make the trunks crack and even split, harming or even eventually killing your tree. You can protect them from this problem by investing in tree guards. Eventually, your trees will get too big for these guards, so you will need to protect the trunks in other ways. One method is to mix one part water with one part latex paint. You then apply this mixture to your trees starting from right beneath the lowest limbs and down to the ground. This process will also protect them from sun scald.


Since you are preparing your trees for winter, you may think pruning them is a good idea. However, fall is not a good time for this task. Instead, you can wait a few months and prune them in the wintertime. Experts say to wait until all the leaves are gone and you can see exactly what you are doing. That way removing the "dead, damaged, and diseased" wood is easy, and you are less likely to harm your trees. Just bundle up and get your tools.

Fall is the time to accomplish various fruit tree maintenance. Fortunately, taking care of these prize trees does not require a great deal of work or money. Replacing your fruit trees is an expensive proposition, so take good care of them this autumn. If you're looking to add more fruit trees to your landscaping, contact a nursery like Kauai Nursery & Landscaping Inc to find out what's available.