How to Prune Ornamental Orange Trees

Written by barbara freeman
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How to Prune Ornamental Orange Trees
Ornamental orange trees need yearly pruning. (orange image by Mirek Hejnicki from Fotolia.com)

Ornamental orange trees are chosen for their visual effect rather than the taste or quality of their fruit. The fruit is less sweet than other oranges; some ornamental oranges are sour or bitter. Among the varieties you can choose are Cidro Digitado (Buddha's Fingers), Naranja Amarga (Seville Orange) and Bergamot. To help your ornamental orange trees thrive, you must practice a yearly routine of careful pruning. Prune ornamental orange trees once each year between January and March, before they begin to flower.

Skill level:
Moderate

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Things you need

  • Pruning shears
  • Loppers
  • Bucket
  • Alcohol

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Look for broken, dead, insect-infested or diseased branches.

    How to Prune Ornamental Orange Trees
    Dead or infested branches should be pruned. (orange tree image by Mirek Hejnicki from Fotolia.com)
  2. 2

    Pour alcohol in a bucket. Cut all broken, dead, insect-infested or diseased branches with pruning shears or loppers. Dip the cutting tools in the bucket of alcohol each time you use them to cut a diseased branch.

    How to Prune Ornamental Orange Trees
    Use pruning shears to prune fruit trees. (garden shears closed image by Kathy Burns from Fotolia.com)
  3. 3

    Use pruning shears and loppers to prune branches that are growing too close together, or are too long or too low. Cut these branches back to the main branch/trunk or to the new leaf bud.

    How to Prune Ornamental Orange Trees
    Cut unwanted branches back to the main trunk or new leaf bud. (orange tree image by Daria Miroshnikova from Fotolia.com)

Tips and warnings

  • Prune your orange trees to maintain their natural form.
  • Do not cut the main trunk (branch collar); it can spread infection to the tree.

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