December – January
Time to prune and time to control San Jose scale.
Pruning and shaping should be done in December and January when trees are dormant. Remove all small twigs and brittle limb ends. Do not prune or top fruit trees excessively. If a tree has never been pruned and is several years old, it may take two or three years of pruning to get the desired size and shape for easy harvesting of fruit.
A rule of thumb for pruning: never remove more than one-third of any one limb. Proper pruning and shaping results in controlled limb length and sufficient strength to hold a fruit crop with minimal limb breakage.
When pruning has been completed, the fruit tree should be treated with a dormant oil spray. Whichever brand you choose, be sure to follow label directions for application rates and conditions.
The dormant oil spray controls San Jose and other scale along with insects that may be overwintering in the tree’s bark.
February – March
Products you will need to control peach and plan insects and diseases during the growing season:
- Insecticide – Malathion 50% E.C. (emulsified-concentrate liquid)
- Fungicide – Captan 50% w.p. (wettable powder)
- Borer Control – Monthly spray of spinosad for as many month as you need.
- Spreader-sticker buffering agent – Con(ph)trol (liquid)
- The first spray application should be made when about three-fourths of the bloom petals have fallen, exposing the tiny fruit. Mix the malthion and captan and Con(ph)trol according to label directions. Apply with a compression type (Hudson or other) sprayer. Do not attempt to apply with a hose-end sprayer. (The timing of the first spray is most important, remember, when three-quarters of bloom petals have fallen, spray. If you wait any longer, the remainder of your spray program will do no good.)
- Fruit trees should be sprayed every 10-14 days throughout the growing season. Consult labels on insecticide and fungicide for waiting period prior to harvest.
- Borer Control Spray – the Lindane 20% is used to control the peach tree borer. Applications are made in the third week of June and third week of August. This material is sprayed only on the trunk of the fruit trees — do not apply to leaves and fruit. Read label and follow directions closely.
- Point to Remember — Most city water supplies are alkaline (high pH). Malathion is not very effective when mixed with water that has a high pH. The product Con(ph)trol is spreader-sticker and a buffering agent. That is, it will neutralize the water and make all ingredients of your spray solution compatible.
- Don’t resort to memory – read the label
- Use all pesticides with caution