Siberian apricot (Prunus sibirca)
‘Westcot’, ‘Capilano #1’, ‘M604’
Apricot is very uncommonlly planted on the prairies. I have seen only a few older specimens, and have only pruned a handful in the past 12 years. That said, they are an interesting small tree, with stunning pink blossoms in the spring, and rarely, small, sour apricots in mid-summer. The most impressive specimen I saw was in a 30 year old neighbourhood in Red Deer, and the tree was cascading over a small pond, bordered by an attractive stone pathway. I can’t think of a better place for a tree like this. For a moment, I forgot I was in Red Deer.
Apricot buds and flowers are easily damaged by spring frosts, and you may only see fruit on a prairie-grown apricot once every 5 years.
When to Prune
In dormancy, from late fall to mid-Spring (preferred).
Since fruit production is not an issue, treat this tree as you would an apple or chokecherry. Train as a central leader standard with well-spaced main branches. Subordinate co-dominant leaders, and remove dead, diseased, and damaged branches.
(c) 2014 Shane LePage, Wild Rose Garden & Tree Service, Red Deer, AB.