What is the little fruit tree method?

Feb 24, 2023, 2:00 PM | Updated: Sep 5, 2023, 2:27 pm

M'li Nielson Hoki joined the KSL Greenhouse show to explain the little fruit tree method. (Canva)...

M'li Nielson Hoki joined the KSL Greenhouse show to explain the little fruit tree method. (Canva)


SALT LAKE CITY – Now that it’s time to start pruning fruit trees, Taun and Maria introduced the little fruit tree method on the latest KSL Greenhouse show.

M’li Nielson Hoki is the founder and owner of Water Wise Designs. She joined the show to explain what exactly the little fruit tree method is.

This method was invented to help people keep their fruit trees at a manageable level and give them enough space to plant more in their backyard. It was mainly created for homeowners who want to grow more fruit trees.

“One of the methods that you use is to plant more than one fruit tree in a hole. You can plant them for pollinators, but more often you plant them for season extending,” M’li said.

Another method to keep those fruit trees small is to prune at three specific times a year. M’li recommends pruning the first time in the spring. As soon as you plant the tree, you should cut it to knee height.

In order to spark a lot of lower growth, you need to make sure that there aren’t any side branches on the tree.

The next time you prune the tree in June, when you shear off half of the new growth. Then you do the exact same thing in August.

On the second year, you choose three to five of your scaffolding branches and group your fruit trees to make them look like a multi-trunk tree. Then you do the same summer pruning like you do in June and August the first year.

On the third year, you start with your regular proper pruning practices in the spring.

“Prune it so it’s open, has good air flow, is the height that you want it, and then in June and August, you just keep it at the height that you want it,” M’li said.

Listen to the full segment on our podcast below!

The KSL Greenhouse is on every Saturday from 8-11 a.m. You can follow the show on FacebookInstagram, and YouTube.

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What is the little fruit tree method?