Too Much Chicken Manure For Young Trees
I have peach trees and apple trees, 3 to 6 years old, that are very
thrifty but grow only wood. The soil was poor when planting, and I have
put on plenty of sweepings from the chicken-yards. I suppose that is the
cause of the trouble.
Undoubtedly you have overmanured your soil with chicken manure, which is
a very strong fertilizer and should only be used in limited quantities.
In order to counteract any acidity or ill effects which have been
produced by its excessive application, it would be desirable for you to
apply about 500 to 1000 pounds per acre of common builders' lime at the
beginning of the rainy season, working it into the soil with the fall or
early winter plowing. Do not cut back the tree during the dormant
season, although, of course, you may have to remove surplus or
interfering branches for the sake of shaping the tree. Winter pruning
induces a greater wood growth during the following summer; therefore, it
should be avoided under such conditions as you describe. Having adopted
such a policy, there is nothing for you to do but to wait for the trees
to slow down and assume a normal bearing habit proper for their ages.
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