A few more thoughts on pruning……….this pear tree I’m working on in the photo above (taken in March 2011) doesn’t look like much, but that fall we harvested about 200 pounds of pears from it! For years this tree never produced more than a few dozen pears, as the previous owners of the property hadn’t realized that it would need cross-pollination from another compatible pear. Prior to my arrival, it was probably the only pear tree within a square mile or more. It took a few years, but the 10 or so pear trees I planted finally started to bloom in 2011, as did the grafts I added to this tree—and it made all the difference. The photo shows me doing some radical pruning to the top of the tree in order to allow more light to reach the grafts that I made lower down on the trunk…………..this year I hope to harvest six different varieties of pears from this one humble tree. It is helpful to keep in mind that pear trees can look quite sad, pocked with sapsucker holes and full of dead branches, and still be reworked into bearing significant crops of fruit—-providing there is cross-pollination, that is.