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plum moth..and other things

We inherited 4 apple trees, 2 pear, 2 plum, a damson and 2 crab apple trees on our allotment,damson is fine, made lots of jam, crab apples too, made jelly with elderberries, yum,now.... pears taste great but have rust on some leaves, and skins are a bit scabby and marked, apples, 2 are fine, (no idea of varieties or even if they'r e eating or cooking types ) 2 have very scabby skins ( will check inside those this weekend) main problem is the plums, I'm 99.9% sure they're Victoria, got absolutely loads, brought 3 bagfuls home, we were all looking forward to scoffing them straight away, when i thought I'd just have a little check... at least 50% have caterpillars insude, we're gutted! Especially the littlies who were hoping to do what they did with the raspberries and eat their own bodyweight whilst picking! Lots of advice needed please on how to improve thing for next year's harvest and avoid the pests,we are total beginners and need help! Oh yes... and regarding raspberries, they're very crowded, I think some are summer (we were picking in late June) and some Autumn (we were picking last weekend) I'm unsure which are which and therefore how to treat (prune) Thanks very much for any advice in advance!


  • rosemummyrosemummy Posts: 2,010

    Sorry should have posted this on allotment thread shouldn't I?....

  • BorderlineBorderline Posts: 4,700

    Yes, I think there are a lot of experts there able to help give you more in-depth advice. Also maybe post some pictures of your trees etc to give an idea of surroundings and size. Your growing conditions may also contribute to some of the issues. Pigeons can damage branches and leaves leaving it vulnerable to attacks. Can smaller trees be under nets or cage.

    Sounds like a mixture of damage to developing fruit that has allowed an attack and possible plum sawfly and as you state plum moth. Maybe look into these Pheromone traps. They are recommended quite often. Thinning out established trees can also minimise damp and rotting conditons. Good air flow and removal of dead and diseased leaves is always good practice.

  • You have my sympathy I had the same problem this year in spite of using the pheremone traps. I think the exceptionally mild spring meant I put them out too late as they have worked before. In theory though the traps are only meant to show you when moths are active & therefore when to spray, so even if you get the timing right don't expect the traps to work completely on their own. You need specific traps for Plum & Apple. This year I also had a big problem with raspberry beetle so yet more traps required next spring.

    Mark the raspberry canes that are fruiting now and when they finish fruiting cut them down completely. The summer fruited canes will have died back a bit so you should be able to tell which of those you can cut. What is left will be next years summer canes. Tie in the ones you want cut out any waek or badly placed canes.

    Mulch well.

    AB Still learning

  • I agree with Borderline's and Iain's comments.  One thing you can do to help reduce insect problems next year is to remove all fallen fruit and leaves from the ground beneath the trees after all the leaves have fallen.  The reason is that the larvae will come out of the leaves and fruit and then pupate in the leaf litter and surface of the soil, so once clear give the surface a good hoeing a couple of times over a week and let the birds get in there to feed on any pupae which you will have uncovered.  Then lay a good layer (at least a couple of inches thick) of well-rotted manure on the surface which will also feed the trees for next year.

    Last edited: 09 September 2017 13:00:17

    A trowel in the hand is worth a thousand lost under a bush.
  • rosemummyrosemummy Posts: 2,010

    thanks very much all, can I compost the fallen fruit and leaves or not?

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