Pomegranate tree pruning is beneficial but you have to know how to prune a pomegranate tree correctly. It is not easy but you will get used to it once you practice the pruning process enough. Such activity is to enhance the growth while maintaining the trees for the healthiest growing possible. What you are going to see below are some effective tips for pruning pomegranate trees that you can easily follow.
When To Prune A Pomegranate Tree
Right after you plant your pomegranate trees in the ground, prune them immediately. This first pruning is to shape it so that it will grow into the shape that you want. When doing this, you need to prune the tree approximately 50% back. Bear in mind that this process requires you to focus on the shape. While helping the tree, pomegranate tree pruning also reduces damage, shock, and stress risks which is quite beneficial for them. When you prune your pomegranate trees immediately like that, they also have better roots and growth; resulting in better fruits.
The second time to prune your pomegranate trees is during the first winter after you plant them. During this stage, you will only need to prune between 4 to 6 branches of the trees. Select the branches that you want to be fruiting branches, then trim those. The purpose of this pruning is to encourage better and more fruits when the fruiting season comes.
As for the last and final pruning is to do it every year, and make sure to prune them during the dormant season. When you prune your pomegranate trees annually, focus on the fruiting branches like how you do it in the second stage. The only difference is that you have to keep 6 to 8 branches while pruning the rest to ground level. Once you can follow these pruning timelines correctly, the results will be absolutely satisfying.
How To Prune A Pomegranate Tree
When it comes to how to prune a pomegranate tree, there will be two things that you want to focus on. It could be a shrub or a tree, depending on the stage that your pomegranate is in. This is why you have to know the correct way to prune them so that they will have the best growth.
Pruning Pomegranate As A Shrub
Even as a shrub, your pomegranate still provides great fruit results if you prune it right. To achieve the best fruit production long-term, there should be at least 3 to 6 trunks to form the bush. With fewer than these numbers, there will be more shoots or suckers emerging from the base of the plant. And if you see suckers emerging, continue to cut them off at ground level and do it several times a year. Keep doing it during the growing season to maintain the plant to 3 to 6 trunks.
Remember to do most of the pruning after the plant has gone dormant in winter, and don’t do it too much. One more important thing to have in mind is that pomegranates form fruit on their second-year wood. If you cut the branch or plant back too far, you might not have any fruit the next year.
Pruning Pomegranate As A Tree
It is possible to train pomegranate trees into a single or multi-stem tree, and there are things to follow. You have to wait until the plants are 2 to 3 years old with at least 3 to 4 feet in height. Then you can begin with choosing 1 to 3 shoots that you want to keep as the main trunk(s). Once you make your selection, remove all the other shoots by cutting them off at the ground. In case the trunk dies or gets injured, remove them and let a shoot or sucker grow and replace it.
Know What To Prune
- Cut off all the fruiting woods that don’t point outwards. So if they point horizontally or inwards, you know that you have to get rid of them.
- Get rid of suckers, the wood that sprouts from your tree base, because they are not beneficial for the trees. These suckers steal nutrients and water from the tree, so prune them immediately when you see one.
- Another important thing to have in mind is that you also have to prune dead wood of the trees. Even if they point outwards, you will still have to cut them off if they are dead (no fruit or leaves). Along with that, make sure to prune discolored wood, wood that has no bark, and wood that looks diseased.
- All heavy pruning should be done during the dormant winter season as it does not affect the trees. As for light pruning like opening the plants and removing suckers can be done in mid to late summer.
How To Care For A Pomegranate Tree
Pruning does a lot of good for the pomegranate trees, but there are still more things for you to remember. I am going to give you some quick tips on how to take care of your pomegranate trees. This is to ensure that the pomegranate trees that you grow will give the best results and yield possible. Some of the most important tips are:
It is very normal for your pomegranate trees to receive fertilizer as much as possible. There is a wide range of good fertilizer options that you can choose from for your pomegranate trees. The key is to go for the ones that are organic and with not too much nitrogen in the substances. You can easily follow the instructions that you see on the package, and you are good to go.
The right time to fertilize your pomegranate trees is after or before the growing seasons which is early spring or late winter. You can do this annually, but not too much because too much fertilizer can attract insects or pests.
One among the best ways to care for pomegranate trees is by mulching, and it is very beneficial to their health. Make sure to mulch around the base of the trees, and it helps a lot to promote their growth and health. The thing about mulching is that it boosts the pomegranate trees’ ability to absorb water. At the same time, it also helps the trees to hold water better as well. Along with that, mulching prevents weeds which will be so beneficial for the trees’ growth. No weeds means no fighting for nutrients and water, meaning better and healthier pomegranate tree growth.
All plants outdoors have risks of getting invaded by pests, but there are ways to prevent them. For pomegranate trees, the most effective way to put a stop to pest invasion is by building a fence. This is because pomegranate tree’s number one pest is deer, and a fence is the best method. Simply build a sturdy fence around the pomegranate tree trunk, and you are good to go.
Besides deer, pomegranate trees are also facing risks from other pests such as ants, aphids, flues, fruit beetles, and mites. These insects will attack the trees, mainly the fruits, and they will destroy the trees within days. The useful method to prevent that is by spraying pesticides, and it will also help prevent diseases as well.
Soil & Sunlight
The good thing about pomegranates is that they can adapt to a variety of soils, from acidic sandy to alkaline calcareous. Pomegranate trees require well-draining soil to grow, so you need to choose the right location to plant them. At the same time, these trees perform best on deep loamy soils but they grow well in clay or sandy soils as well. The only type of soil to avoid is heavy clay since it does not support pomegranate trews at all.
Along with the soil, direct sunlight of up to 6 hours a day is also essential for growing pomegranate trees. Receiving at least 6 hours of full sun per day will result in a good harvest for you. Pomegranate trees need a lot of sunshine every day to thrive, so you want them to get full sun. Although they can tolerate partial shade, it is better to give them full sun.
Pomegranates can withstand some drought, but they thrive best with regular deep watering around once a week. However, you will need to water your pomegranate trees on a different schedule depending on the soil type. Water them twice a week on light soil and once a week on clay soil. When water, make sure to soak the entire root system deeply and the process takes around 40 to 50 minutes. Always allow the soil to dry out between waterings so that they don’t have soggy roots.
An important thing to remember is during dry spells, a drawn-out period where the weather has been dry for an abnormally long time. Water is mandatory during dry spells because the fruits may drop prematurely if not properly watered.
What You Need To Prune Pomegranate Trees
Knowing how to prune a pomegranate tree is one thing, and having the right tools to prune them is another thing. This is why I put together this quick list to make sure that you have all the important equipment. Just a few things, and you are good to go so let’s take a look.
This is also an important thing that you need when you prune your pomegranate trees as well. You will always have to sterilize your cutting tools with Lysol or rubbing alcohol with every cut you make. This is to prevent diseases from transmitting from one tree to another. It could be a lot of work, but at least you know that your cutting equipment is clean and your trees are safe.
Gloves are one of the items that you will need for pomegranate tree pruning, mainly to protect your hands. It is normal to accidentally cut or scrape your hands with the tree branches while pruning. Even worse, some people even experience insect bites like ants and more. This is why wearing a pair of gloves while pruning pomegranate trees is quite essential. Another useful thing is that they keep your hands from rubbing too much with the pruning tools. It can cause callouses, irritation, pain, sunburn, and other forms of discomfort so it is advisable to wear gloves.
As the trees get bigger, the branches also grow, and that is when you need loppers. Loppers are like huge scissors that allow you to prune and trim large branches or bushes with ease. You will need to use them with both hands, and they work amazingly great for pomegranate tree pruning. Loppers are larger and more expensive, so you want them to last as long as possible. Look for the ones that are durable and heavy-duty with rust-resistant blades, and you can use them for years to come.
You definitely need pruners to prune pomegranate trees, and the good thing is that there are so many pruners available. The great thing about pruners is that they allow you to prune smaller and thinner branches with one hand. Pruners are very easy to manage, and they are also compact. When choosing pruners, look for the nonstick coating so that the sap won’t stick to the blades. Make sure to go for durable and sharp pruners, and you are able to use them for years to come.
Pomegranate trees are not different from most trees when it comes to pruning. All you need to do is follow the instruction and prune them at the right time, and you are good to go. This is why the effective tips for pruning pomegranate trees above are useful for you. I make to keep it short and simple so that things are easy to understand. I even include the care and tools that you need to prune them, I got you covered.