Sunday, November 23, 2008

Peach Tree Winterizing

After this Spring's leaf curl disaster, I'm trying to be proactive.

I read that fall plus spring sprays with micronized copper will prevent the disease. Also that covering the trees to prevent leaf curl spores from washing into the buds. Both should be done after the leaves fall and before Winter rains start.

Unfortunately, It's already started raining, and the leaves had not yet fallen.

So, I started by pulling off the leaves. These are small trees (bush would be a better word) and it only took a few minutes to pull off the leaves. They went into the compost bin.

Defoliated Peach Tree

Micronized copper spray. I'm not excited about using sprays, although some growers consider copper a mineral so ok for organic methods. Depends on who you talk to. I followed the directions and sprayed all of the peach trees. It was not raining today.

Then I wrapped or covered with plastic. How I did it depended on the size and shape of the tree.

This is a 1-year old tree that is not genetic dwarf; peach/plum hybrid (Trilite). I tied the branches then covered in a plastic bag, and tied again.

This genetic miniature is about 4 feet tall. I don't think that the stems need to be covered, just the buds. Any that remain exposed can be pruned in the spring. I don't want it to bake either, so the under side is left open for ventillation.

The entire exercise took about one hour. We'll see if it works.

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