The one key task to double the yield on your fruit trees this Spring is a little counter intuitive, give it a good hair cut!
Trimming and cutting branches that have blossoms and leaf bud on bursting into life is not for the faint hearted, but this is the single most important step to do to an otherwise healthy fruit tree if your goal is to harvest the maximum useable fruit from it. The timing is important. I used to prune when the tree is dormant, which is the prevailing wisdom its certainly easier to see what's going on but then I found I have to do another prune in Spring anyway. Now I just wait until very late winter or early Spring when buds are forming and new growth is evident and have found this infact produces better results with less risk to the tree.
While its hard to create a clear to follow step by step guide as to exactly which branches to remove, every tree is different, the outcome you are seeking is to declutter the interior of the tree by removing internal and most inward facing branches. And on the other branches remove 'twins' and reduce competition ensuring an more even distribution of branches and off shoots. Keeping this simple goal in mind will guide you, and reward you with a strong healthy tree producing more fruit and likely to give you less problems.
These pictures show a before and after on one of our many plum trees. Happy pruning!