I'm a bit worried about the Gala apple tree we planted since it was basically set on top of a rotted root ball that we just couldn't get out of the ground. For the most part, the tree trunk had decayed and we pulled out all of the old wood that we could. We then filled the soil back in with garden soil and compost. I'm not sure if this was a good thing to do. I'm also concerned with why these fruit trees had died. Were they diseased? If so, is the old wood going to pass on the disease to my new trees? Only time will tell!
This picture is the corner off of our deck on the back of the house. You might be able to see the tiny red circles I drew in the grass. Those are our apple trees!
As you can see from this angle, the apple tree is planted near the light pole, hopefully to conceal the pole better. Past the light pole is the pear tree. The pear tree is a disaster. Now after I've done all of this research on pruning and care of fruit trees, I feel sad for this pear tree.
I don't know if the poor tree has ever been pruned. I know there are several ways to prune fruit trees, but I like the pyramid shaped trees that have a central leader. I think with a bit of training, it will be possible to recover this pear tree as long as I'm able to remove the one of the Dos Leaders. The one leader, on the right, actually suffered from a severe bout with fireblight last year. It has to go. There are a ton of other branches in this tree that have to go, so I've got my work cut out for me!
Another problem I have: if you look to the right of the pear tree, there are several other small pear trees that have sprouted over the years. I don't think this is a good thing. But if I'm going to loose a pear tree to fire blight, wouldn't it be nice to have another (free!) tree growing in its place? I think that these younger trees probably have a higher chance of also being infected with fire blight, but I'm not sure. I'll pay more attention to them this year since I have a bit of knowledge!