Purdue Extension revises home guide for protecting fruit trees, plants

March 19, 2012

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – The latest version of the Purdue University Extension guide on successful home fruit production may be a valuable tool in helping homeowners decide on which trees or small fruit they want to invest in this spring, as well as proper care to ensure productive harvests.

Managing Pests in Home Fruit Plantings is a guide for homeowners on how to choose the best varieties for themselves. It then focuses on different techniques to manage diseases and insects in home fruit crops such as apples, peaches, pears, plums, cherries, grapes, strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, gooseberries currants and raspberries.

"A lot of people are buying trees and plants now, so these are things people should think about before making decisions," said Janna Beckerman, an associate professor of botany and plant pathology and co-author of the guide. "They can choose the more disease-resistant cultivars and or those that require fewer applications of pesticides to get a good fruit crop."

The guide will help homeowners properly manage the health of their fruit plants or trees using the cultural techniques to minimize pests, as well as appropriate pesticides, fungicides and other disease deterrents, including information on how and when to use the proper pesticides to manage the most common problems homeowners face. It has also been updated to include organic pest management options, when available.

"The updated guide includes new, safer chemicals that are available now but weren’t in previous printings," Beckerman said.

It also includes information for currants and gooseberries, which weren’t in previous editions.

For a copy of "Managing Pests in Home Fruit Plantings," go to http://www.extension.purdue.edu/extmedia/ID/ID-146-W.pdf.

Home fruit growers with specific questions should contact their local county Extension agents. A list of Extension offices can be found at http://www.ag.purdue.edu/extension/Pages/Counties.aspx.
Writer: Brian Wallheimer, 765-496-2050, bwallhei@purdue.edu

Source: Janna Beckerman, 765-494-4628, jbeckerm@purdue.edu

Ag Communications: (765) 494-2722;
Keith Robinson, robins89@purdue.edu
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