why does my plum tree not flower
When a plum tree fails to bear fruit, it is a big disappointment. Think of the juicy, tangy plums you could be enjoying. Plum tree problems that prevent fruit range from age-related to disease and even pest issues. It is important to identify why your plum tree isn t fruiting. Once you know what s wrong, you can take steps this season to ensure a bountiful harvest next year. begin to bear when they are three to six years of age. You can tell right after bloom if your tree will set fruit. Inspect the terminal ends after blossom drop. The ovary should be swollen with the beginning of the new fruit. If these are absent, there was a problem with initial fruit set. This may be due to insects (such as ), weather-related, or even due to poor tree health. The colony collapse disease that is affecting our honeybee population may also be responsible. Fewer bees mean less, a necessity for fruiting. Fruit trees require exposure to cold temperatures, a period called dormancy; then warm temperatures signal the end of the dormant period and the time to begin growth and fruit production.
Extreme cold during flowering will cause the blooms to drop too early, and a plum tree fails to bear fruit. Freezing temperatures before blooms open will also kill the flowers. Without flowers, you will have no fruit. Insects that chew the terminal ends, shoots and flowers will also cause no fruit on plum trees. Excess promotes leafy growth and can diminish fruiting. One of the most common causes of plum tree problems is the lack of a co-pollinator. Plums are not self-fruitful and need another of the same species nearby for pollen transfer. This is done with, moths and other pollinator s help. Pruning at the wrong time removes the buds necessary for flower and then fruit. There are steps you can take to prevent the problem of no fruit on plum trees. Keep weeds and grass away from the base of a tree. Provide good irrigation and a fertilizing program appropriate for fruiting trees.
Fertilizers higher in
will help with blooming and fruiting. is a great source of phosphorus. to create a strong scaffold and minimize upward growth. Pruning is done when the tree is still dormant and before buds have formed. Do not plant where the tree will be shaded or has competition with other tree roots for resources. Plum trees are one of the least winter hardy plants and should not be in zones where temperatures may be -15 F. (-26 C. ). Such cold temperatures kill flower buds and are a reason plum tree fails to bear fruit. Heavy bearing trees may not produce fruit the next year. The plant s reserves are depleted and you will just have to wait a year for it to rally. Fixing plum trees with no fruit sometimes just requires patience and good stewardship and you will soon be enjoying the glorious sweet fruit again. The Victoria Plum is and, although cropping can be improved by a compatible, it should fruit satisfactorily without one. It may be too young; plum trees usually start cropping when they are 4 or 5 years old, depending on the rootstock that has been used.
You may be overfeeding it - once every fortnight seems excessive and is likely to promote lush leaf growth at the expense of fruit, which the growth spurt you mention suggests may have happened; one good feed (perhaps 4 oz/140g of Growmore per square yard) in early Spring, followed by a compost mulch in mid-Spring, should be enough to keep it healthy and encourage fruiting. Overfeeding will also make it more susceptible to disease. I don't have a plum tree, but I have two apple trees, and prefer to take the organic route; I feed them only once a year in Spring, with compost and chicken manure pellets (at the rate mentioned above) which I also use on my vegetable plot, and although the soil in which they are growing isn't the best, they always fruit really well. The blossom it produced may have been scorched by a late frost, although I gather from your comment that this is unlikely.
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