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Products That Keep Worms or Bugs Away From Fruit Trees

By Virginia Franco ; Updated September 21, 2017

Products that keep pests like bugs or worms away from fruit trees range from toxic but effective insecticide sprays that kill the pests to dormant sprays that kill the eggs before they hatch. Still other products work to trap the insects before they can lay eggs or have access to the fruit or foliage. Read any labels carefully to make sure the product you have selected solves the problem of both insect and worm removal, as many products handle either one or the other. You may want to consider buying one product that addresses each problem to make sure you are covered.


Insecticide sprays for fruit trees, in particular those containing Fungicide A, Sevin, or acetamiprid, will kill insects and worms that are attracted to fruit trees and bushes. While in some cases insects may be observed on plants up to several hours after treatment, they will immediately stop feeding once they come in contact with the spray's contents and will eventually die. You must wait seven days after spraying to pick the fruit from your trees. Despite their effectiveness, many try to avoid insecticides as they often contain toxic chemicals that can leave a residue on your fruit and must be thoroughly washed before eating.

Dormant Sprays

Dormant sprays control a wide array of pests. They do not, however, keep worms away. Many prefer dormant sprays to insecticides because they are considered non-toxic and do not kill "beneficial" insects like lady bugs that actually are helpful in minimizing pest problems around fruit trees. Dormant sprays work by suffocating insect eggs before they have time to hatch and must be applied during the spring before leaves appear on your fruit trees. Simply spray the mixture until you have saturated the branches and twigs, and drops are falling to the ground. Effective dormant sprays contain either dormant oil, lime-sulfur, or fixed copper solutions. The most effective choice depends on the type of fruit tree being treated.

Sticky Traps

Sticky traps are made from either a red ball (resembling an apple) or a yellow rectangle covered with a sticky material designed to instantly trap insects that lay eggs that will later morph into worms. Sticky traps should be hung around your fruit trees in late June and should not be taken down until after your fruit harvest. Purchase two traps per tree if your plant is small, and four traps per tree for a medium to large sized tree. Place your traps in an area that is clear of branches, and discard any fallen fruit immediately.



About the Author


Based in Charlotte, N.C., Virginia Franco has more than 15 years experience freelance writing. Her work has appeared in various print and online publications, including the education magazine "My School Rocks" and Work.com. Franco has a master's degree in social work with an emphasis in health care from the University of Maryland and a journalism degree from the University of Richmond.