Apple Trees

It is that time of year when I get all excited and then nervous about the apple trees in my yard. Last year things initially looked really promising… but, though I cringe to say it, there were no apples to harvest last year. None, nada, zippo.  You want to know why???? RATS, that's right, rats or some other unknown creature who climbed those trees and devoured every single one of those apples.

Besides my paranoia of losing all the fruit to critters, I also fret over white powdery mildew and how to prune.  When it comes to these espaliers, I am a complete spaz because I still don't completely understand how to care for these things now that I have spurs and whatnot.

These guys have already flowered and are now starting to form fruit but are a bit bushy.

This guy has a really, really long leader giraffe head that needed to be loped off because I neglected to do so during my winter prune.

I also have dreaded white powdery mildew. I cut out infected leaves that were this year's growth (trying to keep old growth) and will spray with a baking soda/vegie oil concoction tomorrow to minimize that (fungus doesn't like alkaline). 

I thinned out some of the apples but could not bring myself to cut out as many as I probably should.

I removed some of the lower branch scaffolding that I originally used to shape and support the tree which was probably serving as a pretty handy rat ladder. I also need to revamp those metal  sheaths around the trunk because I don't think they did da last year.

What I really need is a cat to prowl the premises at night. Short of that, anybody got some tips on pest control for urban growers?

1 comment:

Unknown said...

Rats?! Yikes. We just have squirrels. Our weird older neighbors use traps and catch them. We aren't sure what happens to them afterwards lol. So I just pictured you doing a catch and release program and it really made my day!!

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