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How to Treat Aphids on Fruit Trees & Plants

over-laden fruit tree image by Alfonso d'Agostino from

Aphids are tiny (2mm to 4mm) insects found on almost every kind of plant and fruit tree. Aphids can be red, black, brown or green. Because aphids can reproduce in seven days without mating, it isn't long before your plants and fruit trees become infested. You will need to implement a plan to control these pests as soon as you discover them.

Pick the aphids off one by one. This may not be practical for a large fruit tree, but it will work on plants. Drop the aphids in a bucket of leftover dishwater. They will drown quickly.

Drown the aphids with your garden hose. This works great on plants. If your trees are not too big, you can use this method for them as well.

Use a small spray bottle of insecticidal soap on your plants. You can purchase a large container to pour into a garden sprayer for application on fruit trees. This product is all-natural and safe to use.

Apply horticultural oil to your plants or fruit trees. This product smothers the aphids without damaging any vegetation. Most horticultural oils require you to mix them with water first, so read and follow the instructions on the label carefully.

Fruit Tree Aphids

Aphids are small, soft-bodied insects that suck sap directly from plant tissue. Pears suffer from green peach aphids, cotton aphids and bean aphids. Older leaves may curl under or drop from the tree as they become stressed. Fruits may be misshapen, low in sugar content or non-existent. Apply a sticky band around the trunk of the fruit tree to prevent ants from reaching aphids that they may be protecting. Planting a thick stand of yarrow, dill or other umbrella-shaped flowers near troubled trees will attract ladybugs, which are natural enemies of aphids.


Do not use chemical insecticides on aphids. The insecticide will also kill other insects, including insects that are natural predators to the aphid.

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