Fiesta Apple – triple cordon

I started training this young apple tree last year. To create a triple cordon I tied its main leader (central stem) up one cane and its two side shoots up adjacent canes, creating three verticals or cordons in a trident shape. Although it is only a young plant (as you can tell by the thin stems) it has settled in well and this year produced a crop of good-sized apples.

To maintain each stem as a cordon simple summer pruning is all that is required. This involves cutting back the side shoots which sprout from each stem in early August to their basal leaf cluster. This stimulates the formation of fruiting spurs and maintains the form. The picture, above right, was taken soon after summer pruning.

‘Fiesta’ is one of the best modern apple varieties, recommended by Keepers Nursery (who BTW are one of the best fruit nurseries in the UK). They say…

A late season variety to pick from mid October onwards. A red apple with some of the aromatic flavour of Cox. Sweeter and less strongly flavoured than Cox. Firm, crisp and juicy. Keeps very well retaining its crispness but losing some of its flavour in storage. A good heavy cropping garden variety.
Origin:Kent UK 1972
Pollination:Fiesta is partially self-fertile but would benefit considerably from a pollinator.

Well, my young plant is certainly heavy cropping, but I’ve got to wait a couple more months before I can taste the apples! In the meantime here is a picture of the tempting, but un-ripe fruit.

4 thoughts on “Fiesta Apple – triple cordon”

  1. FAO Keir Watson
    I am at the stage you were some time ago – just ordering some apple trees. Would you tell me what rootstock your espalier and cordons are on please?
    Many thank
    Jon, Aboyne

    • Hi Jon,
      My apples are all on M26 – a moderately dwarfing rootstock. Apples grown as open bushes (not trained) will get to 3m (10-12ft). There are several more dwarfing rootstocks, but these aren’t recommended for trained fruit. The vigour of the M26 ensures the trained trees gain sufficient nutrients to fruit well under their drastic pruning regimen.

    • Sorry for the slow reply, I must have missed the notification.

      Yes, I am happy for you to use the photo.

      In return, if you could provide a back-link to the page from somewhere on your website that would be great.


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