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Q.Is Our Orange Tree Ruined?

Zone 94954 | Anonymous added on March 7, 2023 | Answered

Hello. My parents recently passed, and the trustee for the estate pruned a 35 year old orange tree in the yard of our family home. Pruned is an understatement. She chopped off more than half of it. My first question is, is it okay to prune when the oranges are ripe and still on the tree? (We are just north of San Francisco.) I am more concerned by the fact that the branches were cut off, flush with the trunk. There is nothing left of the branches. I am going to add a picture of the tree a few years ago. It was lush and thriving. Bountiful. Even more so this year. I will also add pictures from after the pruning/cutting. You can see how it was cut. Do you think the tree will survive? Is there anything we should do? And thoughts and advice would be GREATLY appreciated! I am devastated by this, because my father started that tree 35 years ago, and kept it thriving. He delivered oranges all over the bay area every year. He loved it. Any thoughts or advice would be GREATLY appreciated! Thank you so much! Thank you thank you thank you! ~ Lisa P. S. I added a 4th pic from a few months ago, so you can see how healthy it was.

A.Answers to this queston: Add Answer
Certified GKH Gardening Expert
Answered on March 7, 2023

I believe your tree will survive, but the pruning left it with the oranges out of reach. Also, pruning should be done in spring before flowers bloom, not when fully formed. It was pruned to make it more aesthetically pleasing. It really just needed thinning out and the lowest branches removed off the fence. Here is pruning advice:


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