Harvesting fruit out of trees or doing landscaping becomes a pain if you use a conventional ladder. Most limbs you try to lean against aren’t parallel to the ground giving your ladder an unstable teeter while you try to climb. Other times one foot is either standing on a root causing the top to swing in the opposite way or one foot sinks into the ground. All you want to do is either prune, thin, or harvest your fruit tree but you adjusting your ladder becomes a big hassle. Orchard Ladders are designed to solve these problems.
Orchard ladders are made out of wood, aluminum, and fiberglass. An aluminum orchard ladder is lighter and doesn’t wear down like a wooden orchard ladder does. Because of this wood orchard ladders are being used less and less. The steps are made at least 27 inches long. There are two types of orchard ladders that can be used. A tripod orchard ladder and a straight orchard ladder with two different straight ladders to boot. All orchard ladders have a flared base to provide more stability while on the ladder. The maximum flare on the ladder from top to bottom rails is an average of 2.25” per foot.
The more popular of the two orchard ladders is the tripod orchard ladder. As indicated, the tripod ladder has only three legs instead of the four from conventional ladders. The two base legs are called side rails and the third leg forms the tripod. The third leg is designed for support in a variety of orchard conditions as well as being able to be inserted between tree branches. Some tripod ladders have a telescoping leg built into it. The tripod ladder can be placed close to a wall without having to turn it sideways. Sizes range from 4’ to 16’.
Straight Citrus Ladder or Straight Spike Ladder
Straight orchard ladders are just like a single straight ladder with a flared base. The two types of straight orchard ladders are open top and pointed top. The open top, also known as citrus ladder, lets you lean the ladder against the trunk of the tree for stability. The pointed top, also known as spike ladder, lets you maneuver your straight orchard ladder in between the branches of your tree.
How to Set Up
To safely move the ladder place your arm and shoulder through the ladder and then balance it on your shoulder. If you have a tripod ladder then hold onto the third leg so it won’t swing out. After reaching your destination place the side rails firmly on the ground making sure there are no debris to cause the ladder to be unstable. Always position your ladder to lean uphill. If you are using a tripod ladder then the third leg can be placed to give the ladder a 70 to 75 degree angle. Don’t lean your tripod ladder into the tree for support. If you need to move your ladder to another location then be sure to pick your ladder up and not to walk it while on your ladder. While moving a tripod ladder be sure to hold the third leg so it doesn’t swing into your ladder.