realenglishfruit

Top fruit tree growing advice and information from Real English Fruit

Shelterbelts and fruit trees

Fruit trees perform best if wind speeds have been slowed down. A gentle reduction of wind speed is more effective than a more solid windbreak, and this can be achieved by wind breaks of medium density. For example, birches and alders are more suitable windbreaks for orchards when compared with closely planted Leylandii or Douglas fir windbreaks.

Pollinating insects are more frequent visitors in well protected orchards, particularly when temperatures are low during blossom time the. Strong drying winds and salt laden winds are often the cause of low fruit set and poor fruit growth. Also it has been established that fruit trees form fruit buds more easily if the area where the fruit trees are planted has the benefit of increased temperatures as a result of the wind reduction effect. Again, the best way to achieve this is by a row of birch trees, planted at the edge of the orchard.

Fruit size will also improve, as long as sufficient soil moisture is available.

The distance over which a wind break is still fully effective is approximately 6 times the height of the wind break. The strongest effect will be found in the area of 4 times the height of the windbreak.

Windbreak

Orchard windbreak, photo courtesy of Leslie Seaton/flickr.com

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