April vs August
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.