I am at college studying a foundation degree horticulture course and was just wondering if anyone could help me with my research project?
I have been supplied with a fine kaolin clay, much like the product 'surround', which is a pest, or insect, repellent. As part of my project I will be spraying this clay at a 5% solid to 95% water onto 12 apple trees and using another 12 trees as a control. I will then look at how much damage and intensity of pests are on the sprayed trees compared to the unsprayed to test whether the clay is an effective insect repellent.
However as this particular product has not been used before i am uncertain of a few things...
I can’t find anywhere a suitable spraying schedule, and I am unsure what, if any effect the clay will have on buds or flowers. Should I stop spraying during the flowering and then resume when the fruit begins to appear or continue spraying throughout the whole season from now-ish to when the apples are collected??
If anyone has any suggestions or can help in any way i would be very grateful!!!
There is a very good gardenng site called 'mygardenRHS' you may get some info there.
In general I believe that most spraying stops or, is at least reduced to a minimum, when the trees are in flower. Just to give the insects a chance to do their work. if nothing else that should mean you do get some fruit.