espalier (ĕspălˈyər) [key], 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.
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.