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I have a small apple orchard and keep bees. Can you share if, what, and how you spray your trees? Any experience with oils or soaps?

Thanks very much.
 

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I have a small apple orchard and keep bees. Can you share if, what, and how you spray your trees? Any experience with oils or soaps?

Thanks very much.
Nattle was our choice in Hungary when I grew up there.
Soak it in water for a week and use the liquid as needed.
 

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I've made the decision not to spray. I have hung a pest ball and if something gets way out of control I'll likely do something spray wise, but I'd rather not. My bees are smack in the middle of my young orchard. I got my first fruit from trees I planted last year. There are other wild trees of unknown variety around - and at least one that was grafted but to what is a mystery. Deer got into the orchard over the winter and browsed extensively (on trees I'd already pruned!) so I guess it is back to deer cages!

I guess if I must spray I will look for materials that are less harmful to bees when dry and spray after the bees have finished flying for the day.
 

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I usually do not spray my fruit trees, but I ended up with a bad infestation of scales on a few of my trees this year. I was told that insecticidal soap is not harmful to bees. I sprayed in the evening when the bees were not flying. (and the trees were not in flower either) It seems to have worked well.
 

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Thanks for the replies.

Last year I didn't spray anything. Rubbed aphids off by hand etc...

This year I am trying soap with little success. We'll see how it goes I guess.
 

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I've heard Tobacco water(tea) works well, but it would also more than likely kill your bees if you spray when they are active.

Just a thought. Ill be trying this tea in my garden this year.
 

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No spray = wormy apples in these northeast parts. Not all that appealing.
Plus you might get apple scab, again not all that appealing.

I don't know if there is any way around spraying insecticide chemicals on apple trees to get worm free, defect free apples.

Researched the "organic" approach some and that seems like even more work with somewhat satisfactory results.

I've got some Spinosad which i use in vegetable gardening and is a organic insecticide.
Will be spraying my apples with this as an experiment this year. Works on soft bodied leaf eaters. Works great on potato beetle larvae.
It is readily available in farm supply and hardware stores here but read the instructions of course, harmful to beneficial insects like pollinators during daytime hours so spray late in the evening after bees are in the hive if fruit trees are in blossom.

http://forums2.gardenweb.com/forums/load/fruit/msg1022282221514.html?17
 

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I've got some Spinosad which i use in vegetable gardening and is a organic insecticide.
Spinosad is extremely hazardous to honey bees and other pollinators when wet. Organic does NOT mean safe for the environment, instead that the substance has origins in the natural world. Make sure you read and understand the label.
 

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Hello All, I have 100 Mayhaw Trees and here in south Ga it's very hard to "not spray" our trees.
There are all kinds of conditions that Mayhaw Trees are subjected to. Before trees bud out, is the time to spray for "Quince Rust" and every 7 days until first pink. Then Streptomycin Sulfate
every 7 days until petal fall for Fire blight infection. I try not to spray any insecticide during the bloom however I have sprayed at Night for "Plum Curculio" Weevil (a Must). Streptomycin Sulfate is Not Toxic to Bee's But a Must here in south Ga for Fire blight. Apples are treated about the same as Mayhaw's...........Good Luck!!
Mayhaw12
 

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Soap sprays work better if you add oil. Try a light weight oil like 3rd pressing olive or sunflower. A cup into a gallon of water with 1/4 cup soap goes over well. Mix and spray. SPRAY AT NIGHT. And then hose it all off the next morning. It's worth the effort.

DO NOT spray when you have blossoms. Spray before the tree blossoms or after fruit is set. It can and will make bees too sticky to fly and enough of it will suffocate them. It can and will sunburn blossoms as well.

If you time it right, it's spectacularly effective against catepillars of all sorts and aphids.

Neem works very well, in me experience. I add 2 tablespoons of neem to my soap spray. But again - not when there are blossoms or before you see fruit set. I once sprayed half of fruit trees and then ran out of supplies, went back about 10 days later for the other half. The half I sprayed did not set any fruit, the half I missed all had grape size apples.

And don't forget to rinse it off! It's oil and soap...hello sunburn :)
 
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