by Beth Cook, Mammoth Cave Transplants
Spring is finally here! We have all been busy getting our gardens ready for new plantings like flowers, vegetables, and trees. But what about the plants we already have? Most just need a good cleaning up and they are good to go but fruit trees need a little more TLC than most. Especially if you want to have a good harvest!
Fruit tree maintenance needs to start early in the Spring to help prevent pests and disease. Two rules for spraying fruit trees is to be consistent and persistent!
In early Spring before buds swell, fruit trees need to be sprayed with a dormant oil spray. This helps to prevent scale insects and other problems.The first regular spray of the year is applied when the green tissue is ½ inch out of the bud. This spray for homeowners usually consists of a multipurpose fruit spray. These have both a pesticide and fungicide.
A second application should be made just before buds open. This application should take place 10-14 days after the first application. The next application should take place after the petals of the blooms fall off. You should NOT spray the the trees when they are in bloom.The spray will harm and kill bees and other insects that are pollinating the flowers, which reduces the tree’s yield. In about a week to 10 days apply a “cover” spray. This is when all of the leaves are out and you need to cover both sides of the leaves as well as the leaves in the center of the canopy.
Continue to apply cover sprays every 10 -14 days through the summer. Stop applying chemicals two weeks before harvest begins. After harvest be sure to wash all fruit that have been treated.
Keeping a regular spraying schedule for your fruit trees should help in having a bountiful harvest! We carry a variety of sprays and chemicals to aid you in the care for your trees. But be sure to always follow the instructions that come with the spray you select.
“The tree that are slow to grow, bear the best fruit” ~ Molire
brought to you by Mammoth Cave Transplants, 270-597-2533