espalier

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espalier

(ĕspăl`yər), trellis or lattice used in horticulture for training a tree or vine flat against a wall, either for ornament or to fit it into a small space, allowing it to get a maximum of air and sun and bringing the fruit within easy reach for gathering. The plant, often an apple or pear tree, may be trained into various shapes, such as a fan or a fork. The term is more commonly used for the tree or vine so trained.
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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Espalier

 

a method of crop cultivation by which the above-ground portion of the plant is attached to some type of support, or espalier (poles, stakes, trellises made from rods, walls, or frames with several rows of wire or cord stretched across them). This method of cultivation is used for grapevines, fruit trees, berry shrubs, vegetable crops, and ornamental plants.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.

espalier

1. A trelliswork of various forms on which the branches of fruit trees or fruit bushes are extended horizontally, in fan shape, etc., in a single plane, to secure a freer circulation of air for the plant and better exposure to the sun.
2. A tree or plant so grown.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Architecture and Construction. Copyright © 2003 by McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

espalier

1. an ornamental shrub or fruit tree that has been trained to grow flat, as against a wall
2. the trellis, framework, or arrangement of stakes on which such plants are trained
3. the method used to produce such plants
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005