July 14, 2016: It's a good year for fruit in the Willamette Valley and, in this election summer, it is important that every owner of fruit tree(s) come together, regardless of their affiliations, and support their trees . . . particularly apples, plums, pears, peaches (the heavier fruits). Just yesterday I lost half of a venerable plum tree when a major limb broke off due to a bumper crop of plums.
Cut sapling & 2 x 4 propsCut sapling & 2 x 4 props
Go out and look at your fruit trees now! If they are starting to bend over from fruit, prop them up NOW! A fruit tree prop can be as simple a 2 x 4 or 2 x 2 with a small piece nailed to the top as a tee and cut to a length to jam between the ground and the limb. I've used forked saplings I've cut from my forest.PVC schedule 40 pipe works. You also can buy fancier and more aesthetic looking manufactured telescoping prop poles such as Prop-A-Crop.
The important thing is to act now. Fruit tree owner apathy and disengagement is a major threat to a free and functioning home orchard. It is imperative for every American fruit tree owner to support and uphold our tree's right to bear fruit and to do so without the constraints and strictures of any government or foreign power. But that means we must bear that responsibility responsibly ourselves. Our fruit liberties depend upon an informed and engaged fruit populace.
PVC Sch, 40 pipe gaily decorated with flagging tapePVC Sch, 40 pipe gaily decorated with flagging tape

F & P