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PostPosted: Sun Aug 28, 2005 7:33 pm 
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Joined: Mon Aug 09, 2004 10:32 am
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Location: Mesquite
Hello:

I'm trying to prevent a problem b4 it starts. My peach tree has some branches with yellowing leaves. A few leaves are curled. I'm worried that I may have the beginnings of peach leaf curl. What is an organic treatment for this? I have been following the organic tree program fairly carefully, although I may have not been spraying as diligently as I did last year and I am late fertilizing (missed June and ended up putting a small amount of animal manure and compost in July instead of my usual organic fertilizer). My spray usually consists of fish emulsion, molasses, garlic tea, seaweed, and apple cider vinegar. The tree produced a lot of wonderful fruit this year and it is only in its second year. I'm concerned that it was too much.

Anne


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PostPosted: Sun Aug 28, 2005 8:15 pm 
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Joined: Tue May 20, 2003 4:33 pm
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Location: parker county, texas
I can't diagnose your tree problem, but I will say that this seems to be common for peach trees in late summer. I have a small orchard with several peach trees. Every year at this time, they lose some leaves. I've never had a peach tree die from any disease (knock on wood), and I don't treat them with anything except for Bt if I have a webworm problem, which is rare. Are you certain that this is an actual problem? How many leaves are your trees losing?


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 02, 2005 10:49 pm 
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Joined: Mon Aug 09, 2004 10:32 am
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Location: Mesquite
No, I'm not sure that this is a problem, but my peach tree is kind of my pride and joy so I'm being overprotective. I also have a point to prove. My dad bought me this tree as a housewarming gift last year and it simply must thrive so that I can show him that peaches can be grown w/o toxic chemicals. It has been on Howard Garrett's fruit tree program since I got it. But this year, for some reason, I got the wrong idea that you don't have to add rock powders after the first year. I just review HG's fruit tree program and saw that they are to be added for the first 3 years. Add to that the fact that I failed to fertilize in June so maybe it's just tired from all of the fruit it bore (several pounds). I'm going to go and get all of the rock powders I'm out of that I didn't add in Feb and June as well as fertilizer and add them all tomorrow. I will also spray it again. I'm just wanting to prevent problems or at least nip them in the bud, that's all. I'm also going to remove the grass I let grow over the roots and replace with a cover crop.


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 02, 2005 10:51 pm 
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Joined: Mon Aug 09, 2004 10:32 am
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Location: Mesquite
I forgot to add that it hasn't really lost any leaves.


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 04, 2005 3:06 pm 
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Joined: Mon Aug 09, 2004 10:32 am
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Location: Mesquite
I think I may have found the problem but I'm not sure of the solution. The branch (a main leader branch) with the yellow orange leaves has a bulge at its base where it appears as though it has grown over a twist-tie. The bulge or knot has a "seam" at the center going around the circumference of the knot and at the seam it looks like there is hardened sap. I spoke to the people at Redentas about whether I should try to remove it but it appears as though it has grown well over the twist-tie and only the two ends are sticking out. Should I try to excise the twist-tie or should I just leave it alone? My tree is in need of pruning but I think I'm supposed to wait until winter to do so and I'm not sure I like the idea of losing this branch as it may make the tree look lopsided. The rest of the tree is healthy and lush. My gut is telling me to just leave it alone and apply sick tree treatment (Redentas recommended) for insurance.


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 04, 2005 8:56 pm 
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Joined: Tue May 20, 2003 4:33 pm
Posts: 526
Location: parker county, texas
You can do whatever you like, but peach trees are very tough in my experience. Like I said, I never spray, treat, fertilize or anything else. When I first bought this place, there was a small stick of a peach tree that the previous owner has planted. I never did anything to it. It grew into a lovely large productive tree. Every other peach tree has thrived also, except for the one that a goat ate a ring of bark off around the entire circumference of the tree. If it makes you feel better, by all means treat the tree. Otherwise, leave it alone and it will probably be just fine. Peaches seem to be well-suited to this area and climate. If they were not, I would not go to the trouble of growing them. I am a firm believer in planting what can take the conditions. That's kind of what nature does on its own.


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 05, 2005 7:23 pm 
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Location: Mesquite
You're the first person I've heard describe a peach tree as "tough." I've always heard everyone say they required extra "babying" in our climate, including HG himself. I definitely agree with your mindset though, b/c a lot of people rush to solve "problems" with plants that aren't really problems.

My dad said the branch would die if I didn't remove the twist-tie and that it would be safe to remove it. I guess it's a bit of a risk b/c losing that branch will make the tree very lopsided but I suppose if he's right and I don't remove the twist-tie, I'll lose it or if I do a poor job of removing it, I might lose it. But it could be the other way around also. I'm thinking I could remove it and apply tree trunk goop. But I'm worried it might also be a good entry sight for disease that could affect the entire tree. Is my dad (especially being not organic) being an alarmist?
:?


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 05, 2005 8:12 pm 
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Joined: Tue May 20, 2003 4:33 pm
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Location: parker county, texas
I've not had your particular problem with a twist tie around a peach tree branch, but there are trees on my property where previous land owners have tied fences to trees with baling wire to help support the fencing wire, and the trees pretty much just grew new bark around the wire. It leaves an indention in the tree, but hasn't caused damage that I can find. Still, I would probably try to remove it if I caught the problem early on.

Talking about tough trees, I have had great experience with peach trees, but pears are a different story. I've never had a pear tree survive, and I've tried about 5 varieties. Don't really know what the problem is, but I've decided to stick with peaches and plums on this place. I hate to fight any plant just to get it to survive. If it can't survive in normal circumstances, it seems to me it's not suited for my conditions. That's natural law, and I prefer to work with it rather than against it. Now, my vegetable garden is a different story :) but that's because it's a seasonal thing.


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 06, 2005 5:16 pm 
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Joined: Mon Aug 09, 2004 10:32 am
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Location: Mesquite
I just went out today and it looks better, not worse, unlike I expected based on my dad's reaction to my question about the problem. So, maybe the tree is saying that it's plenty capable of handling its own problems, thank you. The branch is now almost as green as the others which makes me wonder if it just needed some food. It kind of reminds me of how this same tree which was leaning to and fro at the beginning of the season decided to straighten itself up AFTER someone removed the staking kit I put in place (our neighbor mows the lawn). I didn't rush to stake it b/c I know you're not supposed to but it really looked like it was going to break in half on windy days so I decided to.

Have you tried Asian pears? I don't know if they're more or less suceptible to problems but they are wonderful. However, I have to admit, if I had to choose between an Asian pear and a tree-ripened peach, I'd choose the peach any day. So, it is IMO better to be able to grow peaches and not pears rather than the other way around. And I LOVE Asian pears.


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