Bagging fruits on the tree, for insect and disease protection


Pineapple pear is new to me. Something else to think about!


Well, it’s a great pear for those low chill areas, especially very low chill areas, and it is self-pollinating as well. I see varying reports of its resistance to FB, from resistant to not very resistant. I have not had any FB issues with it, and it is a very vigorous, hardy, tough tree. It also sets fruit early. It is supposed to be very good for cooking and canning, and also good out of hand. It is supposed to have a hint of a pineapple taste, and the pears are supposed to be quite large. It does bloom pretty early, so that is a something to take into consideration for those with late frosts. LE Cooke likes this pear a lot:

I am hoping all my pears ripen at about the same time. Looking to make a nice pear dessert with them.


Those are some good looking pears @hoosierquilt! Low chill and ripens in August? That variety looks to be a real winner. LE Cooke trees are usually reasonably priced as well when I can find them.


Thank you, Clint, and thanks to your idea, I might actually get to EAT some this season. Figs, pears and peaches are the 3 most decimated fruits in my yard. This pear is supposed to be a really good choice for those with low chill hours, think it is 150-200 ch, and it always leafs out first, and sets first in my yard. My other pear trees are just now waking up. And, it seems less affected by Pear Sawfly as well. Can’t remember where I picked up the tree, but it’s been a real winner in my yard. And, it’s really my only cooking pear, too, so very glad I’m going to get a few pears this year.


MrClint, I noticed that you used metal screen material to make pouches. I am thinking about using the plastic screen. It seems easier to handle and softer. strength wise, I think it is strong enough to protect the fruit from squirrels. But I am concerned of any potential harmful chemical, if any, get into the fruits.
Would you please comment on pros and cons of using plastic screen material . Thanks.


IL, surprisingly, the metal screening I bought from Lowe’s was very easy to use, pliable, and easy to cut (I used my tin snippers, cut like butter). I thought the same think, but Clint assured me the metal screening was easy to use, and the squirrels can’t chew through it. One of my ripe Galaxy peaches got ripped off the tree and fell to the ground (no doubt by a damned squirrel), but he still couldn’t chew through the metal screen, so I had a nice snack all to myself, yesterday :slight_smile:


I like the screening idea. I think I may spend some time this winter prepping screening bags for peaches. It will be worth the work as they could be re-used. Maybe work in a large sized snap swivel in a bag corner to anchor it to the tree branch to prevent squirrel theft.


Don’t you think a screen covered structure would be a lot less work? Covering a few peaches won’t be too much effort but a structure would be a lot easier for an orchard.


I’m not sure about the metal screening idea, by the fall of last year the squirrels figured out that they could rip baggies out of my apple trees. There is nothing worse than finding a half eaten apple in a baggie on the ground. Squirrels are really stronger than they look. If they started to rip out packaging made of metal screen I’m afraid they would take off small branches and scar bark.


I would love a screened enclosure. Just don’t know if (when) I can get to that point. I have played with the idea of fabricating some sort of individual peach tree framing to use for seasonal coverage, ie: drape screening or have hardware cloth panels made that can be placed at the right times, after pollinators are done. I have such a temporary setup with my blueberries already: I used 4’ rebar driven in 2’ deep with 52" hollow steel t-posts riding on the aboveground 2’ rebar sections, then draped it with netting.

I’m just starting with peach, but I plan on keeping my three peaches under 7-8 feet or so. Just depends on how wide a spread I let them have. If I go with 8-10 wide feet the summer enclosure idea may be workable.

As crops get bigger and I worry more about loss, it may just happen.


I bought both metal and fabric screen. I feel much comfortable working with fabric screen, the metal one is soft and not difficulty to handle but I am worried these little tiny metal piece left on the floor might poke my bare foot. Also, the fabric screen bag can be store a lot more flat than the metal ones.
Cost wise, they are about the same, I get about 0.25 a bag which is not too bad if it works against the squirrels. I figured if I leave 100 peaches on one tree, it only cost me $25 bucks. And these bag can be used next year, I hope.
The unanswered question is will or will not the dip on the fabric screen, looks like sort of rubber, release any harmful substance when it is in contact of fruits. Same goes to the alum. screen too, it is coated with some polymer, will or will not the polymer stable enough and not release any harmful substance.


Annie, I guess you can always avoid getting poked in the foot by metal screen by wearing shoes :slight_smile: And for me, my squirrels are pretty wiley, and fabric screen would be no match for them - they’d chew right through it in 2 seconds. Clint found that out, which is why he uses metal screen. I plan on storing my used metal screen rectangles in a flat cardboard box. They will lay flat enough stacked on top of each other, and I can add a piece of cardboard on top to flatten them more, if need be. And, I cannot imagine that any harmful substance from either type of screening material could be transmitted into the fruit in any amount that might be harmful to you. The screen would have to be coated with a significant amount of toxic chemicals to be able to be absorbed in high enough levels into the fruit to cause any sort of medical concern.

Patty S. (RN)


Your imagination is wild


A screen enclosure would be great if you have a place to store it and could dismantle it easy when not in use. I don’t have that kind of available storage space. These pouches scrunch down pretty well in a plastic tub in the garage.

I haven’t tried plastic screen, so I can’t speak to using it. Steel screen is cheap enough and easy enough to work with.

I have squirrels really fighting to open a number of the pouches this year. They are starting to take it as a challenge. Shredding leaves, chewing the pouches, chewing branches, knocking down pouches, etc. I’m going to up the game a little by adding some tanglefoot around some of the stapled areas. The trees along the block wall are getting pounded right now.


It is high time I wrap my fruitlets in protective pantyhose.

Yeah-- it was me. I was the creep in Walmart buying boxes of women’s pantyhose today.

My wife can have the extras.

Don’t judge. I love unblemished fruit, and I love beautiful women.


What does that cost you per fruit?

I use zip lock sandwich bags for apples and organza bags for soft fruits. After a season the bags still looked like new so I am reusing them this year. 5x8 is large enough for most fruit and the “moss green” colour does not stand out. Added benefit is if you tie the drawstring to the branch if your fruit falls when ripe it stays attached to the tree and it’s not vulnerable to bugs are animals on the ground.


About $5 bucks per box of 10 knee-high pantyhose. Each piece of hosiery can be cut in half-- and the ends tied off-- resulting in 20 usable pieces/ protected fruits. They last one or two seasons-- eventually deteriorating. Sometimes if the fruits plump up big enough, you get “holes in your runners.”

Probably more expensive than your longer-lasting ziplock bags, but I like the added breathability of the footies. And I like to have an excuse to buy women’s lingerie.


The organza bags are a nylon mesh. 100% breathable. Zip locks I only use for apples.


I’m still stuck on ziploc sandwich bag for both my apples and pears. Also bagged ten peaches this season with the ziploc bags.


I am also using nylon footies to bag my soft fruits. I got them on Amazon, for about $10.50; the are the little nylon socks used in shoe stores for people to try on shoes, and are already the size I would want for my fruit, so that’s handy. In the reviews you can see that many of the other purchasers also had the same idea! I didn’t count them, but it’s a small shoe box crammed full of them–approximately a gajillion. A pretty good buy.

I will probably use these until they are no longer of use, but I have to say I love those little organza bags, HungryFrozenCanuck! It would be like having each fruit individually gift wrapped! So fancy! :relaxed: