When it comes to spray programs for apple and pear trees, the
two rules are to be consistent and be persistent. Quality fruit
these days takes these two things, and time. It seems like
quality fruit must be sprayed at the recommended intervals.
Starting with dormant oils, these need to be applied before buds
swell. Dormant oils are usually needed only every two or three
years to provide control of scales and mites. Sure, the
populations will build up in the off years, but they should
remain relatively low if the three-year program is followed.
The first regular spray of the year is applied when the green
tissue is one-half inch out of the bud. The spray used by
homeowners usually consists of a multipurpose fruit spray (and
sulfur if needed for powdery mildew). Multipurpose fruit spray
has been reformulated the last year or two to include malathion,
captan and carbaryl (methoxychlor was eliminated from the old
mixture). This same mixture would be used when the fruit buds
are in the pink stage -- when the buds show color. After that,
the persistence and consistence pay off as you spray with the
same mixture about every 10 days until we get to within two
weeks of harvest. In our area, we need to continue spraying this
late because of apple maggot.
This spray schedule will also control borers on apples and
pears, if you also thoroughly spray the trunk and main limbs of
the trees. On nonbearing, young fruit trees where borers have
attacked, you can spray the trunks every two weeks during June
and July with a multipurpose fruit spray.
[to top of second column]
The spray schedule for peaches, nectarines, apricots and plums
varies a little bit. The dormant spray for them uses captan
fungicide. This is the only spray that controls leaf curl and plum
pockets. The next spraying, also with captan, is when fruit buds
show color, followed by captan at bloom. When the husks begin to
pull away from the base of the fruit, we would then spray with
sulfur, captan and malathion. This mix would then be used every 10
days or so to within a week of harvest.
For borers on the peach
group, you can spray or paint the trunk only with carbaryl (Sevin)
on June 15, July 15 and Aug. 15. We walk a tightrope with the loss
of some of the insecticides since carbaryl can cause fruit drop or
thinning on the peach group and some apples.
New website launched
The Logan County Extension office has launched its new website at
www.extension.uiuc.edu/logan. The site contains program
information, subject matter, links to other university sites and
fact sheets. More material is being added all the time, and this is
a 24/7 link from our office to you.
Used tire collection
One of the best ways to eliminate breeding grounds for mosquitoes
is eliminating tires outside. There will be a tire collection April
1 at the Logan County Fairgrounds from 8 a.m. until 3 p.m. Enter
through the south gate. Agreement forms for the free disposal are
available at the Extension office. Remember, you may participate in
only one free tire collection, so prior participants are not
Fulton, unit leader,
University of Illinois Extension,
Logan County Unit]