How would I prune old apple trees that are overgrown?
We just acquired property with three old apple trees that have not been taken care of in years. We are looking for someone to come help us prune the trees and teach us how to care for them.
While the Cooperative Extension does not have the resources to do the pruning directly, the State of Maine maintains a list of licensed arborists that should be a great place to start locating someone to help you out. Maine arborists have plenty of experience pruning apple trees.
That said, apple tree pruning is definitely a garden chore that can be handled by homeowners and home gardeners, either starting with this initial revitalization, or in later annual maintenance after an arborist performs the first pruning. Please check out our UMaine Extension page on pruning fruit trees, in particular the instructional video by UMaine Extension professor Dr Renae Moran on how to prune apple trees. There is also a section on renovating neglected trees, which will be helpful whether you decide to do this work yourself or consult with an arborist.