realenglishfruit

Top fruit tree growing advice and information from Real English Fruit

Tag Archives: apples

May orchard update – grubs in plums or apples

If last year you found grubs in your plums or apples, now is the time to do something about it. Depending on the severity of the problem, the correct pheromone trap will reduce or eliminate the damage.

If you have plum trees, please make sure a pheromone trap is placed in the tree. This will reduce or eliminate damage by the plum moth. The same principle applies to apple trees, but in this case the trap to be hung in the tree is the codling moth pheromone trap.

Continue to water young fruit trees. Make sure the one square metre of clean soil around the trunk of the fruit trees stays without grass and/or weeds. This is to ensure that your watering is to the benefit of the young fruit trees, and not the weeds and grass.

Pheromone trap, photo courtesy of MPaola Andreoni/flickr.com

Pheromone trap, photo courtesy of MPaola Andreoni/flickr.com

How do you know when apples are ready to pick?

This is the time of year at which many English apples and pears are ready to pick. Many people wonder how to be sure to pick the fruit at the correct time. If picked too early the fruit will shrivel and will be lacking in flavour. If picked too late, fruit will have started dropping off the tree, because over-ripeness is often the main cause of the drop.

The best way to judge if the fruit is ready to harvest is to lift the fruit gently. If the stalk gives way and therefore easily parts from its base on the branch, then this is the first indication that harvest time has arrived. The second test is to taste the fruit. If the flavour is fully developed and the fruit is very juicy, while still nice and crisp, then you are really sure the fruit is ready to be picked.

Once harvested, to lengthen the shelf life, keep the fruit as cool as possible. The ideal temperature is approximately 4 degrees Celsius. The bottom of the fridge is about that temperature. Do not try to store fruit which is damaged, as it soon will start to rot.

Photo courtesy of WxMom/flickr.com

Photo courtesy of WxMom/flickr.com

Weekly update for the fruit garden – second week of August 2015

Apples:

Many apple trees are carrying too much fruit. To ensure that you have a crop next year, remove surplus fruit from the tree this week. Copncentrate particularly on damaged, small and green fruit in the centre of the tree. As we are in a drier spell of weather, do not let the trees go short of water, while the fruits are swelling.

Cane fruits:

Cut out the old canes of summer fruiting raspberries. Finish picking the red and black currants.

Gooseberries:

Watch out for gooseberry sawfly. These caterpillars can defoliate your gooseberry bushes within a week. Organic materials are available in the garden centres to prevent this menace.

gooseberry_sawfly_Crabchick

All fruit trees:

Net the trees if birds are pecking the fruits. If not, wasps will hollow out the fruits, such as apples, pears, plums and greengages.

 

Photo courtesy of Katherine Shann/flickr.com

Photo courtesy of Katherine Shann/flickr.com