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Topic by MsDebbieP posted 02-18-2012 01:35 AM 18988 views 1 time favorited 41 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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MsDebbieP

14694 posts in 3873 days
hardiness zone 5b

02-18-2012 01:35 AM

Topic tags/keywords: espalier festoon belgian fence cordon

This is a GATEWAY to everything posted at GardenTenders.com tagged as “Espalier”

Feel free to add any info (technical or practical) here as well.

 

-PLANT INFO MASTER LIST http://gardentenders.com/topics/1678

Has anyone used espalier -ing with their fruit trees?

Here’s an interesting link on the subject.

-- - Debbie, SW Ontario Canada (USDA Hardiness Zone: 5a)



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Cindy

346 posts in 2584 days
hardiness zone 6

02-18-2012 06:36 AM

I thought that was fascinating – I’ve always been interested in espaliers, but I didn’t understand them. I laughed when I read “espaliers are naturally healthier than a natural tree” (paraphrasing) since an espaliered tree is UNnatural in the fact that it has been shaped by hand. lol

I wonder if the espalier spirit can be mimicked if the fruit tree is pruned, shaped, and maintained on a strong sturdy arbor instead of a wall? I don’t have wall space, but it would be an interesting experiment to see if it can be done on a free standing structure – seems plausible! Instead of climbing roses, we could have fresh fruit!

What I found most interesting was how the trees are pruned so that only fruit producing wood remains. I would have thought such heavy pruning would be harmful in the long run (vigor) but it’s just the opposite!

Thanks for the link : )

-- ~ Cindy, Virginia Appalachians, UDSA Hardiness Zone 6 ~

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MsDebbieP

14694 posts in 3873 days
hardiness zone 5b

02-18-2012 07:19 AM

I think that as long as the supports are sturdy enough to hold up the branches laden with fruit then it doesn’t matter where the tree is located.

It was an interesting article, wasn’t it!

-- - Debbie, SW Ontario Canada (USDA Hardiness Zone: 5a)

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MsDebbieP

14694 posts in 3873 days
hardiness zone 5b

02-19-2012 04:07 AM

here’s another link – container gardening espalier

-- - Debbie, SW Ontario Canada (USDA Hardiness Zone: 5a)

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sharad

1671 posts in 3090 days
hardiness zone 11

02-19-2012 07:11 AM

Debbie, you have posted a link to a very informative and useful article and will be interesting to find if anybody in India, which is so rich in tropical fruit trees has tried this technique. Is there any pictorial information on espaliering? Cindy, you have made very realistic comments.

Sharad

-- Bagwan-- “If someone feels that they had never made a mistake in their life, then it means they have never tried a new thing in their life”.-Albert Einstein

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MsDebbieP

14694 posts in 3873 days
hardiness zone 5b

02-19-2012 12:53 PM

here’s a “search for “espalier images. It should give you lots of ideas. I’m sure you could grow something on your terrace!

-- - Debbie, SW Ontario Canada (USDA Hardiness Zone: 5a)

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MsDebbieP

14694 posts in 3873 days
hardiness zone 5b

02-19-2012 12:54 PM

Cindy, here’s an image of espalier that is not on a wall...

-- - Debbie, SW Ontario Canada (USDA Hardiness Zone: 5a)

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Cindy

346 posts in 2584 days
hardiness zone 6

02-19-2012 01:12 PM

Debbie, I love that last link! Seeing the freestanding espaliers…well, you’ve started my mad plotting & planning again – lol. If only I had more room! I have an old 10’ x 8’ aluminum shed that my neighbor is tearing down for me this year. In it’s place I’m going to have my container grown veggie garden. Right now the shed is standing about two feet away from the side of my home – so the actual veggie garden will be 10’ x 12’ after I expand it a bit. The three sides that won’t be up against the wall face east, south, and north. I think I’m going to put up free standing espaliers on the east and south side, since the entrance to the garden is going to on the north side (where my back door is). Just off the top of my head I’m thinking about setting up sturdy frames in a two sided triangle/pyramid shape with the plants trained up the slanted sides and easy picking from the open center. I saw a huge tunnel made out of 2” x 4”s that were triangular/pyramid is shape. They were so tall that you could walk through the middle of the tunnel to pick the tomatoes (that’s what was going on it). It was so clever!

Sharad, if you can do a Google Image search, tons of images should come up…I’d love to know if you find out about tropical espaliers in India!

-- ~ Cindy, Virginia Appalachians, UDSA Hardiness Zone 6 ~

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MsDebbieP

14694 posts in 3873 days
hardiness zone 5b

02-19-2012 01:14 PM

I think the first link said that all they need is 6 hours of sunlight, re: location

-- - Debbie, SW Ontario Canada (USDA Hardiness Zone: 5a)

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Cindy

346 posts in 2584 days
hardiness zone 6

02-19-2012 01:49 PM

I don’t know if this will work, but I’m hoping this will link to a list of common fruit trees, and if they are self-fertile or not. I would love to do apples and apricots!

http://www.flowerworldusa.com/info/fruit_trees.html

-- ~ Cindy, Virginia Appalachians, UDSA Hardiness Zone 6 ~

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MsDebbieP

14694 posts in 3873 days
hardiness zone 5b

02-19-2012 03:08 PM

isn’t this exciting!! :)
I look forward to watching how you make this come to “fruit-ion” :)

-- - Debbie, SW Ontario Canada (USDA Hardiness Zone: 5a)

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Vince Kirchner

192 posts in 2662 days
hardiness zone 5b

03-11-2012 05:37 PM

I am in the process of setting up four apple trees in espalier fashion on a trellis. This was one of my ideas to maximize the space in my backyard to get more fruit tress in a relatively small space. I have included a couple of pictures which show the trellis system I am using. The posts are 4×4’s set in concrete, 2×4 top boards to control any sag or spreading over time, and the wire’s are 3/16” stainless. The apple trees are all dwarf trees ordered from Grandpa’s Orchard so I could pick the rootstock to assist in controlling the growth. I will have to lookup the rootstock, I just don’t remember those details anymore. The spacing on the wires is 18” so light will get through the espalier trees but allow me to setup a microclimate on the opposite side directly below the trees for part sun/shade plants.

Trellis System for Espalier, Close-up of the trellis system for my Espalier Apple Trees.

Espalier Apple Trees, My Espalier trellis system for Apple Trees

In my studies of Espalier trees and plants, I found out that essentially any tree or plant can be espaliered. Most people think of fruit trees, typically apples, pears, plums, peaches. But I have been able to find examples of mullberry, medlar, persimmon, serviceberry, elderberry, and figs. The various parts of espalier trees are shown below.

Photobucket



I spoke with a Master Gardening group in Paris, they explained to me that they use espalier trees as hedge rows, fences, and to take advantage of very small areas. They also use the heat of the stone buildings to assist with the short and cool growing seasons. But our discussion also provided insight into another possibility that I had not seen until then, and that was what some call a Belgian fence. Very similar to espalier trellising, but with this training, they keep the tree established no higher that 18 inches off of the ground. The French call this a step-over fence as they do not use the term Belgian, which we chuckled about. Images of the Belgian fence and a training guide from a very old espalier book.
Photobucket

Photobucket

Steps involved to create a Belgian Fence

-- If you wouldn't spray it in your mouth, why would you spray it on your food?

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MsDebbieP

14694 posts in 3873 days
hardiness zone 5b

03-11-2012 10:49 PM

wow, wow, and wow.
I hope we see more of your espaliers.

The resource images are excellent and I’ve never seen the Belgian version before. fascinating!

-- - Debbie, SW Ontario Canada (USDA Hardiness Zone: 5a)

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jroot

5121 posts in 3503 days
hardiness zone 5a

03-12-2012 05:25 AM

Very impressive, Vince. I like the plan.

-- jroot ....... Southern Ontario .......... grow zone 5A ...................."Gardening is an exercise in optimism." ....... . . Author Unknown

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Vince Kirchner

192 posts in 2662 days
hardiness zone 5b

03-12-2012 01:26 PM

jroot – It should work well as the shadows never fall on the four dwarf fruit tress in the center of the yard due to the angle of the sun during the growing season, by the time the sun is lower in the sky I am starting to lose all the leaves on the espalier tress or I have lost them already.

Here is an older book on the internet archive on cordon training, you can download a PDF copy or DJVU.
http://ia600309.us.archive.org/11/items/cordontrainingf00brgoog/

Or you can read online.
http://www.archive.org/details/cordontrainingf00brgoog

-- If you wouldn't spray it in your mouth, why would you spray it on your food?

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Cindy

346 posts in 2584 days
hardiness zone 6

03-12-2012 05:07 PM

Vince, that’s wonderful reference! I’m not able to build a rig like you have (my landlord would flip!) but I think I will try a modified Belgian Fence. 18” is far too short here, the rabbits, skunks, and everything else would feast, and the feral cats would probably mark on it (YUK!). But I can clearly picture in my mind’s eye a 50” tall Belgian-style fence surrounding my soon to be built veggie garden. It would make a lovely living picket fence! Since I’m 5’ 3”, it would be pickin’ height, too – lol. Just looking at all those apples is making my mouth water… Thanks for the great info!

-- ~ Cindy, Virginia Appalachians, UDSA Hardiness Zone 6 ~

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Vince Kirchner

192 posts in 2662 days
hardiness zone 5b

03-13-2012 05:38 PM

Cindy, any height would be perfect as long as it works for you. The French did state in their references that it was quite common when the plants were young that they were covered with a hoop of chicken wire to protect them from the rabbits. They did not seem to bother the plants after they were established.

You will have to takes pictures when completed, the thought of a fence such as that during the springtime in bloom sounds outstanding.

-- If you wouldn't spray it in your mouth, why would you spray it on your food?

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MsDebbieP

14694 posts in 3873 days
hardiness zone 5b

03-15-2012 07:23 AM

this is from the book Vince shared with us, indicating the importance of how one prunes the trees:

-- - Debbie, SW Ontario Canada (USDA Hardiness Zone: 5a)

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MsDebbieP

14694 posts in 3873 days
hardiness zone 5b

03-15-2012 07:30 AM

so re: above .. very interesting idea:
  • you want more leaves on a weak branch than on a healthy one – providing it with more nutrients.
  • also, by letting it swing naturally, it will build strength (as opposed to being tied to a fence).
    This makes sense as it is said that staking a new tree will weaken it.

-- - Debbie, SW Ontario Canada (USDA Hardiness Zone: 5a)

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Vince Kirchner

192 posts in 2662 days
hardiness zone 5b

03-20-2012 08:01 AM

Debbie,

I have provided links to the latest information provided by Ohio State Extension Office which was recently published in their fruit production book. The pruning section is the very last pages. I spoke with Dr. Steve Prohaska from the OSU Extension Educator for Crawford County Ohio after a pruning seminar regarding espalier training and pruning. He referred me to the text below, but he did state that it does require more time to establish and train along with yearly maintenance. But the care is short bursts of watching and trimming and pruning as you walk by, more a labor of love to me. You will see the new documents do not go into enough depth on the subject which is why I have been searching older texts for a more in depth study on the subject.

Chapter 2

Trellis

Regards
Vince

-- If you wouldn't spray it in your mouth, why would you spray it on your food?

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jroot

5121 posts in 3503 days
hardiness zone 5a

03-20-2012 08:13 AM

Oops, the link to Chapter 2 seems to be non functioning. Perhaps Vince can check it again.

-- jroot ....... Southern Ontario .......... grow zone 5A ...................."Gardening is an exercise in optimism." ....... . . Author Unknown

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jroot

5121 posts in 3503 days
hardiness zone 5a

03-20-2012 04:38 PM

I was in New York City at the Cloisters last year, and saw these. Very impressive.

-- jroot ....... Southern Ontario .......... grow zone 5A ...................."Gardening is an exercise in optimism." ....... . . Author Unknown

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Vince Kirchner

192 posts in 2662 days
hardiness zone 5b

03-24-2012 12:28 PM

Not sure why chapter 2 did not work, let’s try it with the www placed in front of it even thought the actual web address does not have it.

Chapter 2

Let me know if that works jroot. It looks like the tree has seen a few years there jroot, I hope mine turns out that nice.

Regards
Vince
Starting seeds today and pulling weeds in the garden. :-) Happy man!

-- If you wouldn't spray it in your mouth, why would you spray it on your food?

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MsDebbieP

14694 posts in 3873 days
hardiness zone 5b

03-24-2012 01:14 PM

I started reading the information but my mind went “waah waah wahh”. I’‘ll have to wait for a “step 1, step 2” blog :D

-- - Debbie, SW Ontario Canada (USDA Hardiness Zone: 5a)

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jroot

5121 posts in 3503 days
hardiness zone 5a

03-24-2012 06:23 PM

That last link for chapter 2 works welll, now, Vince. So much to learn. Many thanks.

-- jroot ....... Southern Ontario .......... grow zone 5A ...................."Gardening is an exercise in optimism." ....... . . Author Unknown

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Iris43

3811 posts in 3502 days
hardiness zone 5a

03-25-2012 08:41 AM

I am late coming to read this information, but thought you might be interested in seeing how my DD used this this method to help shade the south-facing window of her greenhouse. This is an apple tree she trained. The picture was taken last May.

Photobucket

-- 'To plant a Garden is to believe in Tomorrow'

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MsDebbieP

14694 posts in 3873 days
hardiness zone 5b

03-25-2012 08:56 AM

this is great!!
It’s nice to see what it looks like when in leaf (and blossom)

-- - Debbie, SW Ontario Canada (USDA Hardiness Zone: 5a)

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jroot

5121 posts in 3503 days
hardiness zone 5a

03-25-2012 03:07 PM

Now that is impressive, along with the very impressive greenhouse.

-- jroot ....... Southern Ontario .......... grow zone 5A ...................."Gardening is an exercise in optimism." ....... . . Author Unknown

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Cindy

346 posts in 2584 days
hardiness zone 6

03-25-2012 03:51 PM

I like that! My landlord is a stickler about neatness, and I have some concerns he may not like being able to see my future espaliers from the road, but if he comes complaining while it’s fruiting, a tasty apple or pear should do the trick! lol

-- ~ Cindy, Virginia Appalachians, UDSA Hardiness Zone 6 ~

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MsDebbieP

14694 posts in 3873 days
hardiness zone 5b

03-26-2012 02:27 AM

the fruit should definitely keep him happy about the idea :D

-- - Debbie, SW Ontario Canada (USDA Hardiness Zone: 5a)

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Vince Kirchner

192 posts in 2662 days
hardiness zone 5b

03-27-2012 10:37 AM

MsDebbie, you don’t like the steps1, steps2, steps3. I paint by numbers the same way. :-)

jroot, thanks for letting me know about the link.

Iris43, Thank you for sharing the picture. Wonderful job on the tree and I love the greenhouse to. The second advantage to the greenhouse is the fact that they have shaded the greenhouse naturally during the hottest part of the year without shade fabrics, white washed glass, or other means. Then during the winter the foliage is gone and they get the full benefit of the sunlight without the fuss.

-- If you wouldn't spray it in your mouth, why would you spray it on your food?

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MsDebbieP

14694 posts in 3873 days
hardiness zone 5b

03-27-2012 11:29 AM

oh yes, that’s how I like to paint!! :)

-- - Debbie, SW Ontario Canada (USDA Hardiness Zone: 5a)

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MsDebbieP

14694 posts in 3873 days
hardiness zone 5b

05-14-2012 01:40 AM

not sure if this is a new link or just an updated link

and on Belgian Fencing

-- - Debbie, SW Ontario Canada (USDA Hardiness Zone: 5a)

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Molly2

1 post in 2069 days

06-19-2012 08:29 PM

A great reference book with a lot of color photos and step-by-step instructions for espalier, cordon, double cordon, fan, step-overs, and other forms is called “Grow Fruit” by Alan Buckingham. Best frit growing book I have seen yet with all fruit covered in detail (tree, melons, berries, and unusual fruit). I have been using his info to maximize my yard space.
Here is the link to the book at Amazon. I am new, am I allowed to post the link?
http://www.amazon.com/Grow-Fruit-Alan-Buckingham/dp/0756658896/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1340162640&sr=8-1&keywords=grow+fruit

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MsDebbieP

14694 posts in 3873 days
hardiness zone 5b

06-20-2012 01:54 AM

that looks like a great book.

(And yes, we love links to resources)

-- - Debbie, SW Ontario Canada (USDA Hardiness Zone: 5a)

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MsDebbieP

14694 posts in 3873 days
hardiness zone 5b

08-29-2012 02:59 AM

-- - Debbie, SW Ontario Canada (USDA Hardiness Zone: 5a)

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GEOwen

3 posts in 1837 days
hardiness zone 9b

02-07-2013 01:51 PM

Best source of information I’ve come across is Espalier Fruit Trees, Their History and Culture by Alan Edmunds. Published during WWII, it’s well out of print but shows up once or twice a year on ebay. There’s also a re-publish of 200 copies out of Pomona, California, in the 80s.

Three sample extracts:
http://books.google.com/books?id=g5c_AAAAYAAJ&q=lateral#search_anchor

-- “The American Republic will endure until the day Congress discovers that it can bribe the public with the public's money.” ― Alexis de Tocqueville

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MsDebbieP

14694 posts in 3873 days
hardiness zone 5b

02-07-2013 03:27 PM

looks like a great resource.

-- - Debbie, SW Ontario Canada (USDA Hardiness Zone: 5a)

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jroot

5121 posts in 3503 days
hardiness zone 5a

09-25-2013 11:08 PM

I was at Chenonceau yesterday, on a tour of the castles on the Loire River in France. I saw this interesting example of espalier, and immediately thought of MsDebbieP. Here you see the espalier is about 12 inches / 30 cm tall and quite long. You can see the trees are very mature.

-- jroot ....... Southern Ontario .......... grow zone 5A ...................."Gardening is an exercise in optimism." ....... . . Author Unknown

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MsDebbieP

14694 posts in 3873 days
hardiness zone 5b

09-28-2013 03:42 AM

if any of my apple twigs are alive next spring, this is what I envision along my garden paths.. that would be cool, huh? So unique—love it.
Must have looked amazing “in real life”.

-- - Debbie, SW Ontario Canada (USDA Hardiness Zone: 5a)

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jroot

5121 posts in 3503 days
hardiness zone 5a

09-28-2013 09:08 AM

et un autre ... and another ... this time from Giverny. More apples espelier.

I have been trying for at least 5 minutes to upload one of my photos, but to no avail. IT will NOT allow me to use my own photos right now. Sorry about that.

-- jroot ....... Southern Ontario .......... grow zone 5A ...................."Gardening is an exercise in optimism." ....... . . Author Unknown

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MsDebbieP

14694 posts in 3873 days
hardiness zone 5b

09-28-2013 01:48 PM

I can be patient :)

-- - Debbie, SW Ontario Canada (USDA Hardiness Zone: 5a)

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