The best time to prune your fruit tree is in the spring while your tree is still dormant. This allows you to see the branches without leaves in the way and will also allow the tree to start healing as soon as it comes out of dormancy.
The very best time is right before the buds break, but this is also the very best time to spray those trees with dormant oil, aerate your lawn, cultivate your planting beds, add mulch to your beds, till your garden, plant cold weather crops, apply pre-emergents to your lawn and perennial beds, do your first fertilization to your lawn, clean out leaves and dead perennial stalks so your bulbs wont be smothered, clean out last years growth from your ornamental grasses, prune your roses, prune raspberries, turn on your sprinklers, fix your sprinklers, and enjoy the nice spring weather before it gets too hot. So, I prune my trees in January and February because none of the other things mentioned above can be done early. Pruning your tree early may slow the healing process slightly but won't effect the trees overall health.
|Pruning an Apple Tree|
It will be nice to know that with all you have to do this spring, one of the most important things on your list is done, and a pruned tree is a happy tree!
For more information regarding the pruning terms used in this post, visit our pruning page here.