Cordon Apple Trees

Dear Jo

I am designing a 4.00m length of cordon apple trees for my client.  I could either specify 3 x pressure treated softwood timber posts 2.40m long, with 1.80m above ground, plus 3 horizontal rows of 2mm wire with tensioners at one end of each.

Or gripple system.  This is less familiar to me; should I use galvinised wire or nylon?  Is this a better system?

And posts?  Is there a rot proof post as alternative to timber which still looks good?

Thanks for your help.


Dear Mary

Please accept my apologies for the delay in replying to your email. 

I can strongly recommend the gripple tensioner system for supporting fruit trees.  I use this in the Kitchen Garden and it is one of my personal favourite Harrod products.

I use it with nylon wire which is dark green.  You thread the wire through a hole in the tensioner, wrap the wire around your support (in our case a timber post) and thread the wire back through another hole in the tensioner.  Then pull it as tight as you wish.  The tensioner grips the wire.  They are very simple to use and extremely effective.

With regards to the posts, we use pressure treated timber posts with our trained fruit trees in the kitchen garden.  If you are combining your fruit trees with an arch, we have an arch fencing system which is designed with espalier and cordon trees in mind.  This comes with a ten year guarantee. 

I hope this is helpful.  Please let me know if you need any further information

Kindest Regards


Jo Blackwell

Kitchen Gardener