How do we prune?

The fig trees are showing new vegetative growth just days after we pruned meaning more energy from the plant can be focused on these new leaves rather than wasted on the extra branches. But how do we prune? At UGArden we have many perennial fruit crops such as blueberries, blackberries, muscadines, and figs. These must be pruned carefully to optimize the fruit production by allowing the fruit to grow larger and to open the center of the plants to increase air circulation and sunlight exposure. Here are the guidelines we follow when pruning our fruit crops:


  • Remove any branch smaller in diameter than a matchstick
  • Remove branches growing back in towards the center of the plant
  • Take out branches growing low to the ground
  • Cut out old canes at the ground leaving 6-12 younger canes


  • Trim the lateral growth to 12-16″
  • Take out all branches growing below 6-8″ so the fruit doesn’t hang on the ground
  • Trim the main canes down to about 4ft in height


  • Minimize competition by only allowing one shoot to come up from the ground towards the overhanging wire
  • Select two main arms to grow out in opposite directions along the wire and cut out any competing arms
  • For the branches left on the two main arms, trim them down to 6-8″ in length and 6-8″ apart


  • Reduce the growth to only 5-7 main branches, cutting out the older wood
  • Any branches rubbing against each other must be cut out
  • Remove low hanging branches and branches growing towards the center of the plant



About rebekahmoo

I am a Junior at UGA pursuing a major in Chemistry and minor in Horticulture. My goal is to become a high school teacher after receiving my Master's in Chemistry. However, I have always loved plants and gardening so through this internship I hope to gain more understanding and experience growing food organically. Looking forward to a great semester!
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