The first year we didn't dare prune. We were so happy our little fruit trees grew we just patted them a bit and smiled.
The second year we referred to a bunch of books, downloaded diagrams from the internet, bought a range of special pruning tools and still only managed to trim a couple of centimetres here and there.
Year three we were complacent/ busy/ lazy/ nervous and overwhelmed by it all and didn't prune at all.
Year four I invited my neighbour over for coffee and just *happened* to be out pruning when she arrived and she just *happened* to have to watch me botching it completely so she took over while I made coffee...
Year four was so successful the trees went wild and grew and grew. They also fruited like never before. Thinking that the coffee trick only works once and not wanting to undo the magic we left them alone year five.
Well year five was a disaster. The trees were big and spindly, they got some disease and leaf curl and all the fruit was useless. All the neighbours weighed in with an opinion. Just the one opinion- it's because you didn't prune.
So roll on this year, year six. I bought a new pruning tool, (I hate kitchen gadgets but garden ones I can't resist!) grabbed the ladder and just did it. Agggghhhh!!! Who knows how it will effect the fruiting and overall growth of the trees but it made it a LOT easier to spray fungicide on what was left after my butchering so fingers crossed that if any traumatised little fruit do survive they will at least be disease free!