May 31, 2018
Have you ever wanted to grow fruit, but didn’t want to give up space in the yard for one of those heirloom apple trees? Even a crab apple might be too large? Then you will want to know about espalier fruit trees and how they’re grown!
This old technique has been used on grape vines, fruit and flowering trees, and even large shrubs.
Pronounced “ess-PAUL-yay”, the term originates with the French word “aspau”, meaning “a prop”, referencing the trellis that supports branches. It may also have been partially derived from the Italian term “spalliera”, which means “something to lean the shoulder against”.
Espalier has been used to create low walls, lattice-pattern foliage, and best of all, flat-growing fruit trees that can live along a fenceline. It can take many years of training a tree or shrub to create the effect that you’re aiming for, but it’s so rewarding once it takes shape.
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