Peach trees (Prunus persica), considered stone fruit-bearing trees, grow to 15 to 25 feet tall at maturity. Their small size makes them well suited for growing in landscapes small on space. Despite their fruit-bearing qualities, peach trees can be quite problematic. They are prone to contracting diseases that can be serious to the tree’s growth, fruit production and life. The earlier you diagnose the problem and treat it, the less likely severe damage will occur to the tree, assuring a healthy fruit crop.
Plant and grow peach trees according to their desired requirements for proper growth and cutting down on the possibility of disease and pests attacking them. Peach trees prefer full sun; well-drained, rich soil; and adequate air circulation. Trees planted in cramped conditions cause consistent moisture on the tree’s foliage and branches, allowing diseases to form.
Diagnose whether the problem affecting the peach tree is caused by insects or a disease. Examine the tree for signs of insects such as aphids or scales and if present, the problem is more than likely caused by insects. Treat the tree with a suitable insecticide designed for use on peach trees.
Examine the peach tree and note any effects the disease is having on the tree. Check fruits for spotting, cracking and rotting and also check for blossom or fruit drop. Also inspect the peach tree for blight, which is a fungus showing up as purple spots on the foliage turning to brown and falling out, blossoms wilting as well as branches having lesions and splitting.This will help in diagnosing the problem and selecting a correct product for treatment.
Spray peach trees early in the season before blossoms and new growth appear, with a preventative fungicide such as captan or sulfur. Preventative treatment helps in killing any fungi over-wintering on the tree, as well as diseases developing such as peach scab. Thoroughly spray the entire tree with the fungicide.
Spray a fungicide such as tebuconazole or fenbuconaxone if fruits rots on the tree, black or green spots develop on them or blossoms drop and branches have blight. The fungi anthracnese, peach scab and brown rot cause the mentioned symptoms and early treatment is best. Thoroughly spray the entire tree with the fungicide, per the package instructions.
Prune away diseased branches to reduce the possibility of the disease spreading to other parts of the peach tree. Use pruning shears or loppers and make the cut at a healthy section of the branch, approximately 1 inch above the diseased area. Remove any mummified fruit from the tree as well as the ground. Rake up any fallen debris from the ground underneath the peach tree and discard in a plastic bag so the disease does not spread through the garden.