By harvesting in the fall, we are, in fact, reaping the fruits of our labors. There is a category of summer residents for whom care for plants ends immediately after harvesting. But we will focus on conscious gardeners. The garden requires the closest attention before winter rest. The queen of the orchard is the apple tree. How important is the treatment of apple trees in the fall? What drugs to use, and against what objects is it advisable to fight in the fall?
Why process when the apples are already harvested
This simple question can still be confusing. Of course, it will not work to improve the quality of the harvested crop if the apples are damaged by a moth or scab. But if harmful objects were marked on the apple tree, then can we hope that they will not be there next year?
Careful care of apple trees in autumn includes a whole range of measures aimed at increasing winter hardiness, reducing the amount of infectious origin (infection) and destroying wintering flocks of the pest.
If we neglect the autumn prevention, then next year, under favorable conditions for the pest, we can expect a massive destruction of apple trees. And then it will be difficult to save the harvest. In autumn, phytosanitary treatment of apple trees protects the future harvest from a complex of diseases and pests.
Activities not to be neglected
Autumn garden protection activities can be divided into two types:
- chemical treatment;
- physical and mechanical means.
Both types are equally important and work together. Pest control is activated as soon as the apples are harvested. Spraying should be carried out at the beginning of the fall of the apple tree until the night temperature drops, until the pests have fallen into deep hibernation (diapause).
After leaf fall, examine trees for signs of disease on the bark of large branches and trunk (cytosporosis, black cancer). Local treatments may be required. To kill spores of powdery mildew, brown spot and scab, spray the apple tree with fungicides.
Don't skip the fall sanitary pruning of apple trees. It is especially important for an adult fruit-bearing garden. Apple pruning is carried out after leaf fall and until late autumn. Fallen leaves and carrion are a source of infection and a wintering place for pests. Plant residues, together with cut diseased branches, must be burned.
Advice! Do not leave the collected heaps of foliage with pests and disease spores until spring.
Lichen and tinder fungus also need to be fought by peeling and cutting off the branches. They take a lot of strength from the tree and reduce its winter hardiness and immunity. After the lichen, local treatment with iron sulfate (3%) is required, and after the tinder fungus - treatment with copper sulfate (5%).
The final procedure is whitewashing the trunk and the bases of the skeletal branches. Such processing allows you to destroy some of the hidden pests and protect the bark of the apple tree from cracks. In winter, the sun's rays reflected from the snow are a big threat (especially in February). After whitewashing, this threat disappears.
By completing the activities described above, you will prepare the apple orchard for winter rest, and reduce the amount of spring work.
It is impossible to grow healthy apples completely without chemical treatment, but if you carry out preventive spraying against pests and diseases in the fall and use physical and mechanical methods in full, then it will be easier to get an environmentally friendly crop.
Who does autumn prevention save from?
Preventive spraying of apple trees is aimed at reducing the number of pests and eliminating pathogens. Below we present a table with a list of harmful objects of the apple tree and wintering places.
(pest / causative agent)
Where is saved
in cracks in the bark, under fallen leaves
on a young growth, at the base of the buds, on the undergrowth
Red apple mite
at the base of the kidneys, in the cracks in the bark
caterpillars of the 1st age
on branches under a moisture-proof flap (spraying is not effective)
Rose leaf roll
caterpillars of younger ages
on the bark of boles and branches
near buds, on young shoots
Apple blossom beetle
imago (adult beetles)
in the cracks in the trunk, under the leaves
on the bark next to the kidneys
in the passages under the bark
on fallen leaves and fruits
in mummified fruits, in affected branches
on affected branches
inside the bark
fruiting bodies, mycelium
in bark, leaves, fruits
in the kidneys
When analyzing the presented table, pay attention to the wintering stage. The treatment of apple trees from pests is advisable when they are in an active stage. Higher doses will be required to kill the pest eggs. Therefore, the processing of trees is carried out only with a high number of phytophages.
Among the diseases of the apple tree there are those that require mandatory preventive treatment. These include scab and fruit rot. It is necessary to process it taking into account the recommended doses and temperatures for a particular drug.
List of effective chemical protection drugs
The timing of chemical treatments for the apple tree depends on the drug used and the purpose of the procedure. If spraying is carried out on foliage, then it is not allowed to exceed the recommended doses. After leaf fall, the doses of drugs may be higher, which allows you to fight inactive stages of pests and disease spores. Consider how you can treat a fruiting apple tree in the fall from diseases and pests.
Warning! You cannot use all the proposed preparations on apple trees at the same time.
To reduce the toxic load on trees, it is recommended to use a broad spectrum of drugs. For example, treating apple trees with copper sulfate protects against scab and fruit rot, and also destroys the flower beetle and tick.
The preparation of tank mixtures of preparations is not always possible, and repeated treatments within 1 - 1.5 months will lead to burns and death of the tree. When choosing a drug, focus on the most pronounced objects and fight against them.
The treatment of apple trees with urea is carried out throughout the growing season. Only the concentration of the working solution is changed. In autumn, its concentration can be 5 - 7%, and after complete shedding of leaves - 10%.
The treatment of an apple tree with a nitrogen-containing preparation cannot be started before the leaves fall, as this will negatively affect winter hardiness. Urea can be used when about 70% of the leaves fall and until late autumn. With a high number of pests, not only trees are cultivated, but also the soil of the trunk circles. Young apple seedlings are treated with lower concentrations (no more than 5%). Preventive autumn treatment with urea allows you to curb the spread of many dangerous pests of the apple tree, destroying hibernating eggs and larvae. It is advisable to spray trees on a cloudy day or evening. There is a high probability of burns in the sun. The drug has shown itself well in the fight against aphids. With a high degree of damage by the pest, it is advisable to cut off and burn the infested apple tree shoots.
Treatment with a 1% solution of copper sulfate is used against larvae of pests and ticks. Due to the high toxicity of the drug, the treatment of apple diseases is reduced to local treatments of the affected bark on the trunk. Preventive treatments protect apple trees from scab and moniliosis (fruit rot).
In its action, the drug is similar to copper sulfate. For spraying, take a 0.1% solution, for local treatment - 3%. Harmful objects - pathogens of scab, black cancer, cytosporosis, all stages of pests. The treatment of apple trees with iron vitriol compensates for the deficiency of an important trace element. In the fall, you can process near-trunk circles, enriching the soil with iron.
A 1% suspension of sulfur in water is being prepared. During processing, the drug is not toxic, but under the influence of sunlight, vapors are formed, poisoning the colonies of ticks and causative agents of apple diseases. The high efficiency of the drug was noted in the fight against diseases such as powdery mildew and scab.
It is a less toxic analogue of vitriol. The drug consists of lime and copper sulfate, dissolved in water. Some gardeners are replacing lime with clay. The finished dry preparation can be purchased at a specialized store. The Bordeaux mixture should be in your garden medicine cabinet. With her, you will always have something to treat the apple tree from scab and other fungal diseases. In autumn, the drug can be used not only to protect the apple tree, but also other fruit and berry crops.
An effective contact insecticide that forms a film on the surface of an insect, larva or egg. The film prevents the penetration of air and leads to the death of the pest. This is one of the best pest control in the fall.
Complex tank mixes can be made from systemic preparations that solve several problems at once. In the fall, Strobi, Skor, Topaz, Horus will help from diseases. They can be used immediately after picking apples, without waiting for the leaves to fall, since their phytotoxicity is minimal. Aktara and Karbaphos will save the apple tree from aphids and caterpillars. They can be added to the same fungicide tank.
We should also mention bacterial drugs (Lepidocid, Entobacterin, Fitosporin). Treatment with biological products should be carried out in September on warm sunny days. The higher the temperature, the better. The inclusion of biological products in the apple tree protection system does not allow the use of general consuming chemicals.
Now you know how to spray apple trees in the fall and how to do it as efficiently as possible. Processing the garden in the fall also includes whitewashing the boles and the bases of the skeletal branches.
Whitewashing apple trees saves from burns and destroys pests, the disease of the bark of the trunk progresses less. The older the tree, the thicker the whitewash layer.
A simple aqueous solution of slaked lime (or chalk) with copper sulfate can be supplemented with clay, laundry soap and horse manure. Processing with such a mixture will be more reliable.
Whitewashing is carried out at the last stage after all the above procedures. The processing of the apple tree trunk with a solution is carried out to a height of at least 150 cm, capturing skeletal branches. The concentration of the drug is not more than 20%.
Rules and guidelines
Use only approved products with a valid expiration date for your garden. Beware of fakes, check with the seller for a quality certificate. Processing the garden in the fall from pests and pathogenic microorganisms does not differ in technique from the spring procedures. Personal protective equipment is required. All treatments are carried out on a dry, windless day.
All trees are processed in one day. Use a sprayer with a good spray pattern. The smaller the drops, the more evenly the solution will be applied. The device must be looked after, kept clean, and the nebulizer and filters cleaned. Preparations should not be used at low temperatures.
Advice! Do not discard unused working solution. Find a useful use for it and use it on the same day.
In addition to the apple tree, the described preparations protect other fruit trees, berry and ornamental plants. For example, all perennial plants suffering from aphid attacks can be treated with urea.
A little about other methods of protecting the apple tree in the autumn
In protecting the apple orchard, one should not neglect the old-fashioned methods. Take the time to set up fishing belts to catch caterpillars in the spring. Install protective nets from hares on whitewashed boles. Such protection is especially needed for young trees and apple seedlings.
It is better to replace the digging of the trunk circles with loosening, which gives the same result, but not dangerous for the root system of the apple tree. The trunks of seedlings are mulched, increasing winter hardiness.
In the fall, treating the apple orchard is just as important as disinfecting the greenhouse. Never miss these events.