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Question

what,when,how often do I use on my apple tree for insects & catapillers to get good fruit?

Conestoga,PA

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2 answers

  1. The answer can be simple or quite complex, depending on your situation, severity of pest issues, where you live, and how perfect you want your fruit to be. For the complex answer, here’s a link with detailed step-by-steps on what, when, and how often: http://www.caf.wvu.edu/kearneysville/organic-apple.html

    In simple terms, most all pest insects on fruit trees can be controlled organically using four methods. The first is to apply a dormant oil spray available at any garden center or nursery. As the name suggests, this is applied when the tree is dormant. This will help control many pest insects by killing off any overwintering eggs that may be harboring in the tree. The second tactic is to employ beneficial insects. You can buy them online or at certain garden centers or nurseries. The two that you might need for apples are beneficial nematodes and trichogramma wasps. Beneficial nematodes help control maggots in the soil; and trichogramma wasps are tiny, non-stinging wasps that parasitize coddling moths. The third step is put into play is for any caterpillar issues that may escape or come around after the first two have been implemented. These pest insects can be controlled/killed by using an insecticidal spray that you can buy (Safer is one brand to look for). And if you still have any issues with destructive caterpillars, apply Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt), a naturally-occurring, non-toxic bacterium. Finally, put up several bird houses as they can devour thousands of bad bugs in one day.

    1. In response to Kris_Wetherbee

      That should read as "insecticidal soap spray"

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