Few things signal summer like apricots fresh off the tree. Unfortunately, like many other types of fruit trees, many diseases effect apricot trees. Certain factors create an environment for disease and pest infestation in apricot trees. Effective treatment depends on the cause of the disorder. Eliminating the cause and strengthening the tree encourage healthy growth and fruit production. Take appropriate measures to treat your apricot tree and enjoy a plentiful harvest of fresh fruit.
Dig near the trunks of your apricot trees to check for a common pest, the peach tree borer. This pest kills apricot trees that remain untreated. Eliminate the peach tree borer by digging a small section of dirt away from the bases of the tree trunks. Remove the soil a few inches down to expose the area beneath the soil. Look for oozing gum coming from the surface of the trunks in this area. This appearance signals the presence of the peach tree borer. Single wilted branches and slow growth often indicate the presence of this deadly pest. Treat this condition by applying borer crystals in October. Purchase these crystals at your local gardening center and apply according to manufacturer’s directions.
Prune young apricot trees during the summer months. Avoid cutting during rainy seasons when fungal diseases attack trees. Use a pruning saw to cut away leggy growth and damaged limbs. Avoid tearing the bark when cutting. Do not nick or scrape other areas of the tree bark when pruning. Quickly seal the wounds with a fungicide paint to protect the area from disease. Purchase fungicide paint at your local garden center and apply with a paintbrush. Check the pruned area to ensure continued coverage of the wound until the area heals. Healing takes about six weeks.
Clean up all dead vegetation under your apricot trees. Rake up fallen leaves, limbs and rotting fruit. Do not allow vegetation to remain under the trees over the winter months.
Spray your apricot trees with a pesticide spray intended for fruit trees. Apply formulas containing dormant oils a couple of times between December and February. Spray copper formulas in the fall. Apply lime and sulfur compounds in the early spring. Apply all pesticides according to manufacturer’s instructions.