According to Saudha of the This is not the map of my mind blog, if you have a tree in your garden that stubbornly refuses to give you any fruit, you should threaten it that you're going to cut it. Reportedly, that will yield quite the crop.
[...] in the garden, my parents were expressing their intense disappointment about the tree.
"It's a failure," my father shook his head.
"It was planted with so much hope. I gave it so much love - and what does it do? Just climbs towards the moon and does not give us anything." My mother was inconsolable.
Truth be told, if the tree did give fruit at its top, the only ones who'd get to eat it would be the birds and passengers of passing aircraft.
"We'll have to scare it." My father remarked.
"Yes." My mother replied, still gazing up at the tree.
"What do you mean?" I asked.
"You know, threaten it a bit. Call out to it that we'll cut it down if it doesn't give fruit. And then give it a little scratch with a knife to reinforce the threat."
"That's such nonsense." I paused for a bit, "Does it work?"
"Of course it does."