Return to the Fruit & Orchards Forum | Post a Follow-Up

 o
Ant Infested Peach Tree

Posted by harlan S/Cen Tx (My Page) on
Mon, Apr 21, 08 at 19:29

Cutting off dead branches from an old peach tree, I noticed ants coming out of the center where the branch was cut. I am sure the ants are the cause of the branches dying. What to do to bring this under control. The tree has a good crop of peaches on it. Thanks.


Follow-Up Postings:

 o
RE: Ant Infested Peach Tree

Harlan:

Something else is responsible for your dead peach tree branches, probably bacterial canker or a similar infection. Ants are an effect of dead wood, not a cause. You can prevent or at least delay bacterial infections on peaches by thorough dormant spraying with a strong copper solution.

If you want to get rid of the ants, which are doing nothing but nesting in the already dead wood, spray the tree with Permethrin, an insecticide that is widely available on the consumer market. Permethrin is very effective on ants.

I don't know how old your peach tree is, but these trees rarely make it to 25 years before they succumb to branch-killing diseases. Many don't even make it to 20 in a humid summer climate like yours. That's the time to cut them down and plant a new peach tree.

I also don't know what you define as a "good" crop, but if the little peaches are crowded, they should be thinned to a minimum of 6 and preferably 8 inches apart so they grow up to be full-size, quality peaches. Remove all the smaller and insect-damaged fruitlets first, and leave behind the larger, fastest-growing, perfect peaches. If you live in an area where the oriental fruit moth is common, which you probably do, you will also have to spray the tree with an insecticide (Permethrin is also good for this), or bag the peaches in nylon shoe-store try-on footies to keep the OFM from ruining your peaches. I spray first, then install footies at thinning time.

OFM visits are easy to spot on young peaches, since they leave behind a little blob of pectin on the skin surface. The plum curculio leaves a small, crescent-shaped scar, and you don't want that either.

Don Yellman, Great Falls, VA


 o Post a Follow-Up

Please Note: Only registered members are able to post messages to this forum.

    If you are a member, please log in.

    If you aren't yet a member, join now!


Return to the Fruit & Orchards Forum

Information about Posting

  • You must be logged in to post a message. Once you are logged in, a posting window will appear at the bottom of the messages. If you are not a member, please register for an account.
  • Please review our Rules of Play before posting.
  • Posting is a two-step process. Once you have composed your message, you will be taken to the preview page. You will then have a chance to review your post, make changes and upload photos.
  • After posting your message, you may need to refresh the forum page in order to see it.
  • Before posting copyrighted material, please read about Copyright and Fair Use.
  • We have a strict no-advertising policy!
  • If you would like to practice posting or uploading photos, please visit our Test forum.
  • If you need assistance, please Contact Us and we will be happy to help.


Learn more about in-text links on this page here