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Codling moth—How to keep the worms away organically

April 14, 2011 - GrowOrganic
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How to keep those worms out of your apples and pears You might not know their names, but you’ve probably met codling moths before. Codling “moth” sounds kind of cute and fluttery; you’ve encountered it as the “worm” in your apple. Yuck! Messing with the life cycle of the codling moth Codling moths are a serious pest for apple, pear and walnut trees. Control them by interrupting their life cycle at various points. Here’s a helpful diagram from UC Davis Integrated…
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                It is such a satisfying experience to reach up into an apple tree and pluck a shiny apple from a branch.  Should you take a big, juicy bite and see that the remaining apple in your hand has brown yuck and half a worm inside—and you just swallowed—it may be time to take out the artillery.                The Codling Moth lays its larvae on the developing fruit and leaves of apples and pears, and it can also attack walnuts. When the eggs hatch, the young…
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Video Transcript
Hi Im Tricia a California organic gardener. I love it when I find worms in my organic soil but I hate finding worms in my apples and pears. So today I'm going to share some tips on controlling one of the worst culprits when it comes to wormy fruit, the coddling moth.

The first step to prevent coddling moths is orchard sanitation last Fall i was really careful and very conscientious to pick up all dead fruit that was left on the tree. I cleaned up all around the base of the tree I picked up all dead fruits and cleaned up all the leaves racked really well I don't want to give any place for the coddling moth larva to hide. All throughout the season were going to inspect and monitor our trees. Make sure that there's no fruit on the tree that has any little worm holes if so pick it off and destroy it. Also want to keep the area underneath the tree clean if any fruit has dropped off make sure and pick it up and clean it off and destroy it as well. In areas with low concentrations of coddling moths orchard sanitation and mass trappings may be all that you need. This is a cardboard trap with a sticky bottom inside i'll place a lure with a sex pheromone to attract and trap coddling moth males which will reduce the number of eggs laid by the females. I'm going to hang this trap in my pear tree. You want to have about one to two traps in small trees and two to four for larger trees. You want to hang the trap as high in the tree as you can I'm going to take this trap down so I can show you how to maintain it. About every one or two weeks you want to take the traps down and maintain them clean 'em off make sure there's no little coddling moths coming off on them and take a popsicle stick and just rough up the sticky substance and that will increase the life of your trap. In areas of high population of coddling moths orchard sanitation and mass trappings may not be enough. It's time to pull out the big guns pantyhose also known as apple maggot barriers. For best results these barriers should be put on fruit that is less than one inch in diameter but to show you how they go on I'm going to use a ripe apple slide the barrier over the apple and close. These can cut coddling moth damage by as much as eighty percent. This Cyd-X insecticidal virus is another option which is organic and OMRI listed. This naturally occurring virus attacks the larva of the coddling moth and you can get it in a home gardening size or commercial size. This is best sprayed when the coddling moth eggs are hatching contact your local agricultural extension office for the exact timing in your area. If you have a really big pear and apple orchard like maybe a hundred trees or so you could use a confusion pheromone lure like this Isomate-CTT or a crop protectant like this Surround which is made from kaolin clay thats the same active ingredient as Kaopectate. Both of these products may require a license to apply so be sure and call your county ag department. So enjoy the worms in your soil and keep the worms out of your organic apples. Thanks for joining and grow organic for life!

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Solutions: Codling Moths

Categories: Fruit Trees, Apple Trees, Pear Trees, Quince Trees, Organic Pest Control, Insect Trap, Natural Insecticide, Horticultural Oil, Insect Lure, Pest Management


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