Is it too late to spray my young ape tree with baby apes on it?
Hi, Last year I planted a young McIntosh and a young Honey crisp apple aree in my backyard. I have been hesitant to spray them. This year the McIntosh flowered and now has between 20 and 30 small apples growing on it. I am so excited! However something has been eating the leaves on the top of the tree and yesterday we discovered small bugs that have gotten under the bark and are beginning to break up the bark on the lower part of the trunk. Is there a way I can kill these bugs and save my tree and the apples it is producing? Or is it too late? Please help!
Wayne County Michigan
The trunk splitting is usually due to low winter temperature damage. If there are worms / larvae under the bark, remove them or squish them. Ants and most other insects are not a concern. Usually, holes in the foliage are due to caterpillars or leaf curculio. These same insects may target the fruit. The tree can put up with about 10 to 20% of leave removal with no long term negative effects.
A general fungicide and insecticide program can help protect the fruit against scab and the common insects targeting the fruit.