How do I prune fruit trees?
Recently my son and I noticed about 9 big pear trees by a gas station/Wendy’s on the south end of town. Seven of them had been severely pruned, right in full season. Rule number one: prune while dormant or when going dormant. If you miss it, wait until fall. The thing is yes, you should prune crossing branches to let light into the tree, but you don’t need to cut most of the tree away. It doesn’t really grow back. That is like cutting off your arm. You only need to take crowding branches off. There is no reason why less tree is better than more tree, especially when you are talking about a parking lot where the trees are spaced far from each other.
Why someone chose to prune that way I can only guess. The lovely tree in my before picture was pruned just like its peers a few days later. Remind me not to go to the Giant on south St. Francis Drive for a while, it’s too depressing to see these lovely trees, but I will check back in a year and see post an update on the recovery.