Fruit and nut trees

Asked February 3, 2016, 8:07 PM EST

When and what to spray trees with

Christian County Kentucky

1 Response

When it comes to managing a backyard orchard, prevention of diseases is the best approach. So long as you are willing to accept a few spots on your apples, it is not necessary to manage fruit trees at the same level done in commercial orchards. Although your yields may be reduced, it is usually plenty for a family. Many of the issues that apple, peach, plum, grapes and other fruit crops face could be avoided with cultural practices. Every fruit crop is different but generally speaking pruning to open the canopy and increase air circulation, maintaining the vigor of the plant during a drought by watering, and amending nutrients according to soil test are three basic practices that help manage diseases. If you have not yet planted your backyard orchard always consider resistant varieties that give you protection from the most damaging diseases for that fruit. Concerning when to spray and what to use, the most immediate treatment (February/early March) for each of the major fruits are as follows:

Apples: copper to manage fire blight

Peach: chlorothalonil to manage black knot and peach leaf curl

Blueberries: lime sulfur to manage phomopsis twig blight

Brambles: lime sulfur to manage anthracnose, cane blight

Grapes: lime sulfur to manage anthracnose

Complete spray schedules can be found in University of Kentucky publication ID-21

Nut tree information is available in ID-77