need advice on OLD apple tree

Beverly Erlebacher bae at oci.utoronto.ca
Wed Oct 16 16:37:58 EST 1996


In article <53vvnl$86j at Trex.IenD.wau.nl> maarten.vanhelden at medew.ento.wau.nl (Maarten van Helden) writes:
>
>Yes, Grey, it will be insects in the apples, and it would be nice and useful 
>to get a proper identification from an extension officer, maybe together with 
>a chemical cure. The question is wether this would solve the problem. If the 
>larvae are IN the apples there is no way to kill them by spraying. the crop 
>for this year will be partially lost (you can still make excellen apple sauce, 
>and a little extra protein nevere harmed anybody). What i am more interested 
>in is the CAUSE of the infestation. Could be a coincidence, just a couple of 
>egg batches more from this particular insect, but it COULD be that teh cause 
>lays in an increase vulnerability of the tree due to age, overpopulation of 
>apples, fertilization etc. etc.. I was moer looking for a long term approach 
>for an old tree, then a short term solution (nonexistent in this case ??) 

Last year I spoke to the head gardener at a local historic house which
is being restored to show how people lived in the middle of the last
century.  The house has a small orchard which was quite neglected when
the Parks Department took it over.  She told me that the trees were badly
infested with disease and insect problems, and for authenticity they wished
to use traditional controls.  They started by scrupulously cleaning up and
destroying all fallen leaves and fruit, so as to prevent overwintering of
pests.  Great improvement was seen the following year, and after another
year most of the fruit was free of codling moth, black spot and other
problems.

I was impressed by how effective this simple, non-toxic method was.  The
fruit looked good to me - not as perfect as supermarket apples, but quite
acceptable for home use.

Beverly Erlebacher
Toronto, Ontario Canada



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