Espalier is defined by Webster as a lattice on which trees or shrubs are trained to grow flat. Nearly any tree or shrub can be trained in this way if it is started when it's young......your entire support system should be up at the very beginning so you can see where you're going and if any changes need to be made to your design. Fruit trees take up very little space when grown in this way and bear more fruit at a younger age.
To begin, choose your location, a solid wall with enough light and room for the plant you've chosen. Prepare your support, use nails set in the wall or posts set in the ground with wires run amongst the nails to form your horizontal lines. Use more nails positioned in the shape you desire with heavy gauge wire to support the vertically grown branches. Remember, these branches have a natural desire to grow horizontally, heavy gauge wire will be necessary to keep them growing vertically (in the direction you want them to go). Plant your tree or shrub about a foot in front of your structure. Position so that 2 of the strongest branches run horizontally along wires.
Train branches by removing all but 2 shoots on each branch....attach these shoots to wires with soft ties. As the central trunk grows, keep removing side shoots until trunk reaches a set of wires running vertically. Allow 2 side shoots to develop (remove the rest) and attach them to the wires. Continue in this way as your tree grows upward and begins to fill in your support system.
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How about blackberries, wouldn't it be nice to pick them without getting all cut up by the thorns. Yep, it sure would!
Or how about a circle, love this.
Do a search for espalier and you might be surprised some of the fascinating and truly amazing designs you'll find.
I have always wanted to try my hand at Espalier, maybe someday I'll get my chance. Have you tried your hand at it?