Apricot Tree - Patchy leaf growth
Moveed into a new home last summer. The backyard has an apricot tree about 20 ft tall. Last season the leaves came in patchy, where branches would have leaf growth in certain areas of the branch and not in the others, the bare parts could be found anywhere along the lenght of the branches...base, middle, end. I would say the tree had about 75% of the leaves it should of had. The tree did not bare fruit last season, but I was told by neighbours that it had the previous season. I've also been told that for the last 7 years the previous owners of the house had not pruned the tree at all.
The tree just finished flowering, and the branches again had bare spots where flowers did not bloom. I haven't been able to find anything on what could cause the bare patches. I've been told at a garden center by their fruit tree expert that I shouldn't prune more than 10% of the tree, but I was wondering if I need to do something more aggressive to help the tree with whatever issue it's having.
The tree is beautiful when it blooms, and it would be great to be able to harvest some apricots. I want to do what I can to save this tree...any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.