After this season I'm trying something different

First off I would like to say thanks to those that replied to my earlier thread concerning ripeness. It really helped and narrowed down which fruit was ripe, and what could last another day or 2.

Now moving onto my current state of affairs… After this year and trying to go “Organic” I think I have thrown in the towel. Of my (8) PF5B I have picked so far 7 of them have had at least 1 maggot in them. of those 7 only 3 showed signs of being infested (soft spot on one side, darker, etc) the other 4 looked pristine enough. Nothing like biting into a fresh peach and look down to see a huge hole of brown gunk and a maggot crawling back into the hole. Also I have been hit hard with either scab or bacterial spot. Almost all my fruit has it with some more than others. It doesn’t bother me as much as the maggots, but still bad enough to really get to me.

So with that being said I have purchased Captan 50W, Wettable Sulphur, and Imidan 70W. For the remainder of this season and starting next is there anything else anyone can see that I will need? I also currently have Serenade, Surround, and a sticker. Also any help in terms of timing, frequency, etc for a spray schedule would greatly help.

Two Great Sources of Info

Thanks for the links. The first I had not seen, but Scotts I thought was organic. I tried that… but it seems that the pest pressure around my area is just too much. I figured I’d have to be out applying about every 3 days due to weather and the fact that regardless of what I did I didn’t seem to notice a decrease in pest pressure.

Sean, whatever approach you use make sure you know what the maggots are for future years. They could be OFM or curculio or both. If there is no worm at all it was probably a late curc that could not eat the seed to force fruit drop and just “hopped out” via a hole in the side (they seem to do that). OFM are usually still in the fruit, put it on your hand and it will crawl. Curc larvae can’t crawl.

I doubt your pest pressure is any higher than mine, but organic approaches are much more difficult. It took me several years of failures to figure things out and I still get lower yield. For you, the lack of sulphur and spinosad made things extra challenging. Spinosad is the primary moth killer, and sulphur is the best disease spray.

yeah… I used spinosad, but didn’t have sulphur. The black spots are discouraging but not a deal breaker… its just the maggots crawling out of a peach that looked perfect only to find the area around the pit nothing but brown mush. Thats bad enough, but when you see the maggot trying to hide in the fruit you just ate is another story. Maggots in fruit makes the wife not want to eat it, and right now the 4 year old is still a little too young to really get all of it, but I don’t want him to freak out over one.


I used 4 weekly sprays of permethrin (just because that is what i have left) and i got pretty clean fruit. Still seeing late PC hits. Every year the late hits get me. Not enough to make that big of a deal, but still lost some fruit. I have noticed what scott says in that with late hits, the fruit doesn’t drop…a lot of cots are falling and they all have PC in them yet the fruit is somewhat solid (mostly damage near the pit). My apples weren’t sprayed this year and they are a loss.

Late hits are a particular problem with plums, I find

One year I even contacted the IL state entomologist to ask if we have OFM in this area [we don’t] or a 2nd generation of PC [he said not] Just really late curcs

That’s when I bought the acetamiprid

I picked a plum (it just fell off when i touched it) and on top of the plum was a good sized curculio. Just sitting there (a couple of small holes where it had been feeding). I gave it to my kids to play with inside. I figured its an old one about ready to kick the can.

So with you guys getting hit late is it due to missing sprays, not being able to spray due harvest window, or just maxing out the recommended number of sprays per season?

Now scott when you saw crawl, what do you mean? I have seen the ones that I am getting now wiggle, squirm, and move. They tend to not just wiggle about, but move in a direction. I’m not sure I’d really call it crawling though.

Just bad timing on the sprays

I walked out today and saw essentially the entire Stanley plum crop on the ground - every one I checked had a curc trail inside

Really, really late hit. But this plum blooms much later than the Asian plums and other stone fruit, as well as being distant from them, so it’s not on the same spray schedule

Curcs in the cherries, weeks ago, were very mature and often had already left the fruit.

OFM move in a line like a centipede (they have similar legs). If they are not moving like centipedes they are probably curculio.

I agree late curcs can be a big problem. I have a big problem on European plums, they do late bites right by the neck. They are sometimes too late to eat into the seed so you have a curc cavity in the plum when you harvest it. Besides Euro plums I only have spot problems with late curc.

Looking back at past post on GW I noticed you were a big bagging fan. You recommended cotton draw-string bags from PackCo. Do you still like this idea? If I were to bag should I still spray a few times then bag? Or just in the very beginning right before I see fruitlets then bag them up?

Oh that is good news for you. I wondered the same for us in Iowa. Maybe they aren’t hardy to Zone 5b. Maybe if I have time and remember I will send an email to the fruit guy here at the county extension to see what he thinks.

I haven’t had any 1st generation OFM flagging of shoots on my one peach. What about you Sean (@Sean2280)?

Nothing on my end. I do a lot of summer pruning though, and for the most part i spend about 15 min for all the trees. So I could have had it, but nothing that is noticeable. Nothing I would say “Hey, that looks different”

Sean, once I got a lot of fruit I decided bagging was taking too much time. So, I haven’t done bagging for a long time (except on grapes where you can bag whole clusters). I think there are some other people successfully bagging here.

Ok, perfect. I just wanted to make sure it wasn’t an unsuccessful endeavor. Any tips on timing, spraying before, during, etc? I just don’t want to go through this next season and have it end up like this one.

Are you talking about peaches only? I have bagged peaches but not this year as there are no peaches to bag.

As for pests, I have most of them, PC, OFM, CM, stinkbugs and apple maggot flies, ect. I have found that for peaches, footsies, with and without Surround, does not work that well. Some pests lay eggs right through the nylon.

Last winter, someone talk about Clemson fruit bags made of wax paper. I ordered them directly from Clemson. They look promising. I have no peaches to try but the Cityman used them this year (not sure on what fruit). He said it worked. I think the bags seem well equipped to protect peaches. You can google Clemson fruit bags. It should show up.

Once you have a lot of fruit, bagging can be very tidious.

I think I’m going to try the bags next season. Seem environmentally friendly, and if they allow the fruit to “ripen up” in the bag by allowing sunlight that’s even better. Some articles i read talked about removing bags a week before harvest to allow sunlight for peaches to ripen. To me that’s a whole week of bugs bugs bugs lol.

Thanks for the reply!!

It really depends on what pest you have and how many generations of it in a growing season. I have OFM until Sept, judging from flagging shoots. I can’t open bags/protection of stone fruit. For apples and pears, I can open ziplock bags by the end of July if I want to as the fruit grow rapidly and are rader to be damaged by bugs, mostly only skin deep by then.