"Spray Schedule"

Last year I emailed Bonide for a spray schedule. This is what they sent me back. It is very complicated.

Below is an example of a spray schedule;

Dormancy - All Seasons Oil and Liquid Copper
Green Tip (bud break) - Fruit Tree Spray

Pre Bloom - Liquid Copper
Pink Bud - Fruit Tree Spray
Bloom - Liquid Copper

Petal Fall - Fruit Tree & Plant Guard
Cover - Fruit Tree & Plant Guard
2nd Cover - Fruit Tree & Plant Guard
A month prior to harvest switch to Citrus, Fruit & Nut Orchard Spray if needed
Leaf Fall - Liquid Copper

I understand the dormancy & the green tip phase of spray. I am having a hard time understanding the (pre bloom, pink bud, bloom phase) I am growing apples, pears, peaches, plums, and cherries. With different apple varieties that I am growing, they would not all be flower at the time. Also, I have grafts on some of the trees, so one branch would be a different stage than another. I really do not want to spray when the bees are pollinating.
Does anyone have a simple spray schedule? I have neem oil, dormancy oil, cooper, fruit tree spray, and sevin insect killer. My trees, are not real old, but they should start producing this year. Last year, a late freeze came in somehow affected them. The had pea size apple on them and the all fell off in June. (“June drop of apples”) Does anyone have simple spray schedule to share? Thanks

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I know what the different bud stages are. I am looking for a simple spray schedule.

I understand we all want a simple spray schedule. No matter what, some work is needed.

This forum has two very good spraying schedules for members. They are under Guides category.

Synthetics by Alan

And Low impact by Scott.
Low-Impact Spray Schedule (2019 Edition) - #58 by scottfsmith.


Because we can fight different issues, no one can just give you the best plan. We just have stone fruit trees and insect damage is the main fight. Bonide Fruit tree spray did not work for us. Further, the all in one sprays are hard to use if just fungus control is your goal. For example, in the steps above, they tell you to use Bonide Fruit tree spray before flowers open. There are no insects then. While you may want to spray a fungicide before bloom, I would not use the all purpose spray.

We just use Triazicide and Captan. Don’t miss Petal fall, don’t wait for every petal to fall or it will be late.

I also use dormant oil early spring and Surround WP during the fruit swell


Simple spray schedule? It will vary for different crops and perhaps for what area you are in. I hear from some they only spray a few times a season and get great apples. Yet others have a horrible time battling the dreaded plum curculio or other issues.

In S.E. WI my spray schedule for apples is:

                   Leaves first emerge 1/2" long.............spray with fungicide only
                   every 7 days til petal fall.....................spray fungicide only
                   petal fall..............................................spray fungicide + insecticide
                   1st cover (7 days after petal fall)........spray fungicide + insecticide
                   2nd cover (7 days later)....................."                                          "

Due to high PC issues I spray weekly from petal fall until mid June then I go to a 14 day
summer spray schedule.

I know some spray dormant oil, but I stopped doing so about 5 years ago. If I have issues with mites or scale I will start using dormant oil again but no problems so far.

For peach or cherry the schedule is different as peaches need to get a dormant spray of copper or chlorothalonil for preventing peach leaf curl. I also like to hit my tart cherries at white bud stage with copper as this seems to prevent shoot/blossom blight which I had issues with several times (wiped out my North Star cherry). Still not sure if fungal or bacterial but the copper really helped.

Where I live I don’t spray peaches past July 4th as I see no need to. My big issues with peaches are peach leaf curl and plum curculio. I never had pest issues later in the season to deal with except for jap beetle damage in August on new foliage. No issues with brown rot ever in my area.

What insecticides work for me? Imidan and what I have left on Ortho Fruit,Flower and Vegetable Insect Killer (now discontinued-A.I.= Acetamiprid). For fungicides I am using
Captan 50 WP and Eagle (myclobutanil). Also liquid copper and chlorothalonil (for peach leaf curl) but copper works for peach leaf curl too.



Whatever spray program you decide to try, I would not use Bonide’s program. There is no reason to spray all that copper in most instances. I count four copper sprays :roll_eyes: Plus spraying copper at bloom can risk phytotoxicity to some blooms. Copper at bloom will also cause apples to russet. A dormant spray of copper would be useful on peaches to control leaf curl.

I don’t use a dormant oil on anything but apples and pears. It’s not needed for my other fruits.

Their fruit tree and plant guard has a decent insecticide and fungicide, if you choose to use that product.

Their Citrus, Fruit & Nut Orchard spray looks pretty worthless. I’d skip that product and just use the Fruit Tree and Plant Guard up to two weeks before harvest.

There are some good suggestions of spray schedules on this thread if you want to try to get more specific and targeted with your sprays. Ultimately, you’ll find that you will customize your program according to the the various pests and pest pressures unique to your locale, along with your degree of tolerance to damage from insect and fungal pests.



I’ve been following a lot of forums and posts of yours, and have dove into the guides section, specifically regarding spray schedules. I was curious if you, or others, had input on when to start spraying? I just planted my bare root trees, and am curious if I should be stocking up on some of the products mentioned here and getting to work right away, or if it takes a few years of root growth before adding sprays.


For young peach trees, I don’t spray them with anything but a dormant leaf curl spray and a borer spray in the spring or fall. Most insects will leave peach foliage alone, it’s the fruit you have to protect. Sometimes young unsprayed trees can get some scab lesions on the shoots, but that’s generally not a big deal.

Cherries I treat the same way.

Pears need a dormant spray of oil here to control pear leaf blister mite, but generally that’s the only spray I give them till they come into production.

Apples are a little different. Chewing insects seem to like apple foliage, so I try to get an insecticide on non-bearing trees if I see the foliage is getting eaten off.

Japanese beetles will pretty much eat any foliage, so you have to watch for those and react accordingly.

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Hi Reno,
I think sometimes the chemical industry does not have a clue about growing fruit. So the guidance is not surprising. Here in Kent, wa my most significant apple pests are coddling moth and apple maggot fly. My spray technique is adopted to defeating those two pests. In the process I also use the same for stone fruit and it seems to work fairly well. I use liquid copper only during dormant season once or twice, we get a lot of rain here in winter, so I use liquid copper in the fall and several times in Feb- March prior to bud swell.
I use no chemicals on apples or stone fruit other than a fungicide, until well after blossom fall and about when fruit reaches the size of a quarter, I start with the following spray mixture:
2 Gallons of water, dissolve about 8 Oz of Kayolin clay and mix well, once dissolved I add my Bonide Fruit spray, and a few once’s of 20 mule team borax for a surfactant. A key to dissolving the clay to prevent sprayer clogging, is to first mix in a small amount of cold water, shake well to make a slurry, then add remaining water up to 2 gal. During the spraying keep shaking the sprayer periodically to keep the clay in solution. The key to using Kayolin clay is covering each fruit a minimum of 3 times on the first spray effort, allowing the clay to dry on the fruit between each spray. (The importance of getting a good initial coating, especially around the fruit stem cannot be over emphasized!) This gives each piece of fruit a nice protective coating holding the chemical to kill most any grubs that arrive to feed. At either a two week interval, or immediately after any significant rainfall, repeat the spray. This is done until several weeks before fruit ripens.
When you gather the fruit, do not remove the clay coating until ready to eat, then wash carefully with soapy water until the white sheen is removed.
You can find Kayolin clay on the web.
Hope this helps


Would this spray program work on plum curculio?

I do not have this particular pest, but online I read:


Yes, Bonide Eight Insect Control Vegetable, Fruit and Flower is labeled to control plum curculio when used as directed on the product label. Apply when insects appear. Wet the plants to the dripping point. Try to hit underside of leaves and penetrate dense foliage