For the home apple orchard, Malathion Plus is an effective chemical pesticide for control of insects, like aphids, that have the capacity to ruin your edible crops. The trick to optimal application on apple trees is understanding the appropriate use during different seasons, as well as verifying that the pest in question is manageable with malathion.
Vigorous apple trees are more likely to avoid and recuperate from insect pest problems than weakened or stressed trees. When using an insecticide, the healthier your tree, the greater the effectiveness. Grow apple trees in locations that offer full sunlight for optimal development and successful fruit production, according to the Texas AgriLife Extension Service. Apple trees thrive in well-drained soil; avoid waterlogged soil that can quickly lead to tree decline or death.
Malathion Plus is an insecticide applied to apple trees for the control of insect pest infestations including, but not limited to, scales, mites, aphids and leafrollers. Pests like scales, mites and aphids are "sucking bugs" that feed on the tissue fluids of trees. Leafrollers are caterpillars that feed on leaves and fruit.
Using Malathion Plus on your apple trees is a significant aspect of keeping your trees healthy when fighting a pest infestation. Particularly when an infestation is extreme and cultural measures are not sufficient, an appropriate insecticide prevents the severe damage that often occurs. Both sucking and chewing bugs lead to tree decline, cosmetic damage, defoliation and fruit loss. The presence of sucking bugs like aphids results in the fungal infection called sooty mold. Many sucking bugs excrete a sugary substance called honeydew that attracts sooty mold fungi and encourages infection. As the name implies, leaves become covered in soot-hued mold.
Apply Malathion Plus to your apple trees when they are dry. This insecticide is effective as a pre-bloom spray when applied with horticultural oil. Spray during the end of winter or beginning of spring for best management, according to the Colorado State University Extension. Saturate foliage and wait one week before re-applying. Contact your local county extension agent or a licensed professional for assistance or advice.
Malathion Plus is a toxic substance, so practice extreme caution when spraying it on apple trees. Wear safety goggles, protective clothing and gloves, and avoid contact with skin and clothing. Eye contact results in damage that may heal, but includes extreme discomfort and vision problems. If inhaled or ingested, malathion causes severe injury or death. Place this product where it is inaccessible to children and pets. If you experience exposure, contact 911 or poison control immediately.
- Colorado State University Extension: Backyard Orchard: Apples and Pears
- U.S. Department of Health and Human Services: Ortho Malathion Plus Insect Spray Concentrate
- Texas AgriLife Extension Service: Home Fruit Production - Apples
- University of California IPM Online: Leafrollers on Ornamental and Fruit Trees Management Guidelines