We planted and espaliered 2 semi dwarf apple trees 6 years ago, a Cox’s Orange Pippin and a Braeburn and neither has produced fruit. (well, one year we had 5 beginning apples on the Braeburn. ) In the spring, the trees have NO, or some years, a few flowers, and during the summer they produce numerous and vigorous water sprouts. The trees were planted in well amended and watered soil but since then have not been fertilized nor watered. We are trying to slow the water sprout growth. For 4 years we left the sprouts until winter before pruning. However, the last 2 summers we have pruned the sprouts around end of July but they (especially the more vigorous Braeburn on the right of the photo) replace the sprouts quickly and vigorously. We are ready to replace the trees with single Italian prune plum but would like to understand the problem better before trying with another fruit tree. We have a Sergeant’s crab apple nearby that flowers and fruits happily and a kiwi that started producing in year 4 as promised. Because these apple trees were/are so heavily pruned, they produce the sprouts in reaction, yes? We have looked at plenty of other espaliered fruit trees which do not look like ours. Many thanks for any ideas or thoughts. In photo: Take Sept 11, 2018, 6 weeks after removing the first lot of sprouts. and having just removed the sprouts from the lower left quadrant of the Braeburn on the right. (to try to show the structure of the tree).