Fruit trees are susceptible to fungal diseases and insects like them as much as we do. General cleanliness around the garden and orchard will definitely improve the chances of a good harvest but we can’t stand guard at our blossoms all spring and fight off, one on one, every airborne fungus and red spider mite that trespasses on our property. That’s why we spray our fruit trees. We spray them to keep disease at bay and kill off bugs that threaten our crop. We spray natural pesticides because we eat the crop. Here are three natural pesticides we can use.
1. Lime Sulfur and Horticultural oil Mixture. This is an organic fruit tree spray that can be bought mixed or unmixed. Dormant Fungus spores and bacteria are killed by the natural fungicide, lime sulfur, while the horticultural smothers all insects and their eggs.
The ideal time to spray would be a warm enough day before blossoming, with little to no wind or rain, to prevent the oil washing off. Too late and we may burn new leaf. Too cold or wet and the oil breaks down or washes off before it has smothered all insects and/or eggs. It is messy because the whole tree needs to be covered, dripping, from the top down, to be effective.
2. Horticultural Oil and Water mix is another organic spray which is used both in spring and throughout the growing season. Spraying during the day is not effective because the oil will burn the leaves. A better time is early in the morning before it gets hot.
3. Homemade Fruit Tree Spray is a spray that is put together from easily found ingredients to deter, diminish and feed your fruit trees. This mixture can be sprayed from early spring to late summer and is made out of:
- · Liquid seaweed
- · Molasses
- · Apple cider vinegar
- · Murphy soap and
- · 1 Gallon of water
Mix the ingredients and spray early in the morning when the trees are cool and their pores open. The seaweed and molasses will feed the tree while the vinegar kills unwanted fungi. The Murphy soap is made of vegetable oil and helps the other ingredients to disperse evenly while leaving very little residue.
Spraying in early spring followed by summer sprays we make ourselves look and notice. When we look regularly the chances of us noticing a change is much greater.