Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 25
  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    eastern Hanover, Virginia
    Posts
    361

    Question Non Bee Related Topics..... Organic apples?

    been curious lately if any of you guys grow fruit on your property 'organically' but i dunno which forum i should ask in. Apples, pears, cherries, persimmons.....whatever. I'm curious about who has what and what problems , as in bug/disease problems in different areas of the country . I have some potted fruit trees and want to add them to my yard but i've been trying to keep everything growing organically on my property. From everything i've read, fruit and vegetables are 2 diferent things when it comes to growing organically. All the "old timers'' around here are all about spraying everything into oblivion. So, i havent picked up much from people locally.

    I'm looking to share some ideas about fruit trees. I'm currently reading "The Apple Grower" by Michael Phillips, which is outstanding! (if you have read this far) and after buying a few other books over the last few years , i've started to realize how complex fruit can be.



    What say you ?!
    -M@

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Slovenia
    Posts
    325

    Default

    I have all organic...vegetables, fruits ( apples ). No spraying, no problems. If I see aphids I maybe, just maybe spray with Nettles ( which I put into water for 24 hours ). I don't know if it is working or not but I don't see any aphids then. Anyway I let nature take care in form of ladybugs mostly. I really don't care if I see couple of aphids on my trees. I never had any viruses getting into my gardens or something

    If you grow fruits only for your own use there is really nothing complex about it. It seems that fruits and vegetables have problems when you plant them too close and when there are many of the same species closely together. If you leave "space" it works better. This is only my experience and not some science since I hardly ever read any books regarding gardening and growing fruits and vegatebles. Oh and I also try and grow only local stuff.
    Sig

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Indian Valley, Virginia
    Posts
    587

    Default

    most unsprayed apples have appearance issues so they are fine for home use but may be tough to sell.
    i have 3 cherry trees that have never been sprayed and this year they produced quite a few excellent cherries that I was able to sell.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Pepperell, MA.
    Posts
    3,779

    Default

    I have two incredibly old apple trees that grow the ugliest fruit but it tastes sooooo good. The trees are so old they're almost hollow in both trunks and I suppose they won't last too much longer. I eat the apples, the dogs eat the apples and the deer love the apples....including the one deer last fall that decided to knock the cover off one of the hives! If I had to replace the trees, I would grow organically and work hard at figuring out the best way to do it. But, I still can't get over how many apples two unmanaged trees can produce.
    "My wife always wanted girls. Just not thousands and thousands of them......"

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    Devils Lake, North Dakota
    Posts
    9,123

    Default

    I have 300 apple trees and use no spray that is not
    certified for organic use so far.

    My apples are nearly blemish free due to regular use
    of Xentari (bt az) to control coddling moths.

    The only problem I have now was a bout with fire
    blight. I have yet to treat for it and am investigating
    solutions that will adhere to my plan.

    Soaps and alcohol work well for many temporary pests
    and are fairly benign.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    eastern Hanover, Virginia
    Posts
    361

    Default

    Hey Randy, are you growing sweet cherries or sour?

    Ravenseye, if they are really old you might want to get some cuttings off of it and start some new trees before they're gone. There are lots of people looking for those old ugly apples (including ME !)

    Sundance, that xentari is some good stuff. I have a nice crab apple tree that was here when i moved in and it gets some type of tent catapillars on it every year. one, maybe 2, applications of xentari and they all just shrivel up.



    my next door neighbor grows all sorts of fruit but uses so many diferent chemical sprays i'm surprised the entire property doesnt glow in the dark like some sort of nuclear wast dump. I'm worried that my yard will act like a "trap crop" since it's such a poisoned environment next door. I'm guessing my biggest problem is going to be those dang japanese beetles.
    -M@

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Raleigh, North Carolina
    Posts
    3,598

    Default

    the Japanese Beetles are so bad here I gave up and cut down 2 sweet cherry trees I had
    I have several fig trees I love. pests don't bother them and they seem to be quite drought tolerant
    I have 3 peaches a pear and 2 apple trees that are bothered much less by the beetles
    no chems on anything so far, they're only a few years old
    Dave

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    parker county, tx
    Posts
    7,923

    Default

    There are not many apples that do well in this climate, but I have peach and plum trees and one small fig that I planted this year. I don't spray anything except when I have a problem with webworms, which is rare, then I use Bt. The worst pest problem I have with peaches is occasional stink bugs, but the bird population has been keeping the stink bug numbers down this year.
    So many weeds.......so little time.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    parker county, tx
    Posts
    7,923

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by drobbins View Post
    I have several fig trees I love. pests don't bother them and they seem to be quite drought tolerant
    Dave
    What variety of figs do you grow? This is the first year I've planted one, and it's reportedly difficult to find one that is freeze hardy. The one I planted is a Brown Turkey.
    So many weeds.......so little time.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Raleigh, North Carolina
    Posts
    3,598

    Default

    mine are Brown Turkey
    they do great around here, I took a dozen cuttings off my biggest one last March and some of them are 5 feet tall now
    I'm pretty sure you don't have more of a frost than we do
    I'm on the border of zone 7 and 8 here

    Dave

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    Inver Grove, MN
    Posts
    1,462

    Default

    It may depend on your location, but around here, if I don't spray, I have a lot of damage from apple maggot. Coddling moths are also a problem. Fireblight hasn't been a big problem for me, but apple scab can get really out of control.

    If I don't spray, the apples are good enough for apple sauce, pies, and such, but they're appearance is not good.
    Linux - World domination through world cooperation

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    Corralitos, CA, USA
    Posts
    1,247

    Default

    I grow peaches, plums, nectarines, heritage apples, lots of citrus, avocados, etc., all organically. Local climate has a lot of influence on what you can or cannot do organically and I'd guess you're in a much more humid zone than I am. Some spraying is acceptable, in particular, I believe, that some sulfur based spraying for peach leaf curl is acceptable and of course Bt as was mentioned previously definitely is. I don't know that it's approved for organic control of pests on fruits and vegetables, but if you're not in the business of selling you're produce where that matters, I highly recommend Neem oil.

    Neem is from the bark of the Neem tree native to India. It is used in all manner of ways in India and is highly effective against fungal diseases of plants. It has been in use for thousands of years and is part of the Ayurvedic Pharmacopeia. So humans have been using it as medicine and as an agricultural control for a long time. Neem oil can be purchased in garden centers for use on roses at least. I've used it on my fruit trees with good effect and believe it is safe and it is by definition organic, I'm just not sure it is approved for use on fruits and vegies, so if you're marketing them, you need to find out.

    Doug

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    parker county, tx
    Posts
    7,923

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by drobbins View Post
    mine are Brown Turkey
    they do great around here, I took a dozen cuttings off my biggest one last March and some of them are 5 feet tall now
    I'm pretty sure you don't have more of a frost than we do
    I'm on the border of zone 7 and 8 here

    Dave
    Pretty close. We are in zone 7b here. Thanks for the info. My little tree is just about 2 ft tall right now. I want some more for next year, so I may try a couple of cuttings myself.
    So many weeds.......so little time.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Indian Valley, Virginia
    Posts
    587

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Black Creek View Post
    Hey Randy, are you growing sweet cherries or sour?
    the cherries are sweet cherries. I've had the trees for at least 15 years and this was my first crop. its tough to grow any fruit here because of the late spring frosts and freezes.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Tulare County, CA USA
    Posts
    1,380

    Default

    I have peaches, plums, nectarines, pluots, apricots, apriums,walnuts, pecans, almonds and tons of citrus. All are organically grown because it is easier on me to do it that way. I dormant spray the stone fruit for leaf curl and that's about all I do for any of them except pruning. I've been able to handle most pest problems with beneficial insects from Buglogical and I have lots of birds so fertalizer is easy to come by.

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Kiel WI, USA
    Posts
    2,368

    Default

    I planted a Walmart pear tree a few years back, never had anything more than a little pruning and it's loaded for the first time. They all look pretty good.

    I put in a pair of Har-something apricots two years ago, got a few the first year then one died out last winter but is growing from the rootstock, no fruits this year, only a few blossoms.

    Started two Honeycrisps, a Granny Smith, an Intrepid and a Reliance peach this spring from Stark Bros.

    Overall plan is to prune and fertilize, and eat ugly fruit

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    Devils Lake, North Dakota
    Posts
    9,123

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by dcross View Post
    I put in a pair of Har-something apricots two years ago, got a few the first year then one died out last winter but is growing from the rootstock, no fruits this year, only a few blossoms.

    What kind of rootstock??? Marianna?? Usually the rootstock
    will produce nasty fruit, but who knows???

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Kiel WI, USA
    Posts
    2,368

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Sundance View Post
    What kind of rootstock??? Marianna?? Usually the rootstock
    will produce nasty fruit, but who knows???
    I have no idea, figured it might at least pollinate the remaining tree while I decide whether I want to buy a new one.

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    avery county n.c.
    Posts
    240

    Default

    This is the first year that I have sprayed kaolin clay on peaches and apples (plus potatoes, beans) and had very good results. I guess the same thing is sold by Gardens Alive called Surround. The kaolin clay I buy is called Carotex and used by masons for stick on stone. 50# sells for about $10. I mix 2 cups per gallon and spray every 2 weeks.
    Thanks for your time, Beehopper

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,740

    Default

    I have apples, cherries and pears. I never spray anything. I harvest a lot of pears from a very old pear tree. The cherry and apple tree are young and don't produce much yet, but they don't get eaten by the bugs.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Ads