Diseases of Apples & Pears

diseases of apple trees

Apples and pears  can be susceptible to a range of pests and diseases such as aphids, coddling moth, scab, fireblight and mildew. In most cases action can be taken to prevent or control the problem.

Preventative Measures against Diseases

Susceptibility to problems differs between cultivars. The best preventative measure is to choose varieties with good natural disease resistance. Disease resistant varieties are a specialty of ours.

This is no guarantee however and good hygiene practices such as using clean tools to make pruning cuts and treating pruning cuts with a wound paint help to prevent the spread of canker, fireblight and other diseases.

Raking up and removing leaves as they fall is another measure that can prevent scab spores from infecting your trees while avoiding waterlogged soil and wet areas is good practice for canker susceptible varieties. Check your trees regularly for cankers. These should be cut out straight away and infected prunings should be removed from the site and burned to prevent the spread of infections. The fashion at the moment is towards long grassy orchards, but young trees will not compete well with grass and weeds and long grass will will make it impossible to gather fallen infected leaves and fruit allowing spores to jump back into the tree to reinfect again either immediately or the following spring. We recommend keeping the grass short in the orchard and gathering up fallen leaves and fruit. and removing or burning. You could also use a mower with mulch plug inserted which would mulch the leaves as they fall and reduce the chance of reinfection.

Trees can be inspected regularly for coddling moths, aphids and other pests and if caught early can be removed by hand before an infestation occurs. There are also a range of products, both organic and non-organic that offer control of fungal/bacterial diseases and pest infestation problems.