cherry fruit fly soil emergence barrier?

Asked July 13, 2017, 1:16 AM EDT

I have a 20-foot sour cherry tree in the back yard that is heavily laden with fruit--and with fruit fly larvae. With animals in the yard, I'm averse to using even Spinosad, and I wonder whether I could use a barrier to: a) catch larvae as they drop from the infested fruit; and b) prevent the emerging adults next season from escaping the ground. I'm considering a tarp, staked suspended about a foot above the ground in the fall, then laid directly on the ground after the snow melts next spring. I would irrigate the tree with a soaker hose arranged under the tarp until after the flies' emergence period. There's little to no vegetation directly beneath the tree, due to its large, thick canopy, but I realize that covering the soil could result in some collateral damage to beneficial flora and fauna. Is this idea worth trying?

Hennepin County Minnesota

1 Response

I suppose you could try it but it sounds a bit complicated and I cannot imagine it working. If you are completely against using any insecticides, then I guess it is the only thing you can do. Here's the information on that pest again. Maybe you will change your mind. http://www.extension.umn.edu/garden/yard-garden/fruit/integrated-pest-management-for-home-stone-frui...