How to Use Footies to Protect Apples


Apple maggots and codling moths are both pests of apple trees. The larvae of both insects feed on the growing apple fruit, devouring the apple harvest before you have a chance to pick it. While you can get some control over apple maggots and codling moths with chemical sprays, there is a wholly organic and effective way to protect apples with footies. Footies are the nylon slippers that you use to try on shoes in shoe stores, but they also make a great barrier for boring apple maggots and codling moth larvae.

Step 1

Wait until the apple fruit is the size of a nickel, between May and June.

Step 2

Thin the fruit on each cluster of apples until only one apple remains. Pick the fruit off with your fingers. Leave the apples with the thickest stems.

Step 3

Slip the footie all the way over the growing apples.

Step 4

Twist the open end of the footie around the apple's stems.

Step 5

Leave the footies on the apples until they are ready to harvest.

Tips and Warnings

  • Be sure to put footies on your apples before the codling moths and apple maggots lay their eggs. They usually lay their eggs from May to June, depending on the part of the country and the weather.

Things You'll Need

  • Footies
  • Step ladder


  • Cloud Mountain Farm: Disease and Pest Management in the Home Orchard
  • Gardening with Ciscoe: The Apple Maggot
  • Oregon Live: Protect fruit from apple maggots and codling moths

Who Can Help

  • Seattle Pi: Good Enough To Eat: Give apple maggots the boot
Keywords: protect apples with footies, Apple maggots, codling moths, put footies on your apples

About this Author

Hollan Johnson is a freelance writer for many online publications including Garden Guides and eHow. She is also a contributing editor for Brighthub. She has been writing freelance since 2008 and her interests are travel, gardening, sewing, and Mac computers. Prior to freelance writing, Johnson taught English in Japan. Johnson has a Bachelor of Arts in linguistics from the University of Las Vegas, Nevada.