Amazing, 60° (F) on January 15th in the Missouri Ozarks. The flower buds are swelling due to the warm weather. It is definitely time to start spraying your fruit trees.
Neem Oil is the perfect choice to spray fruit trees. Neem oil is both a fungicide and an insecticide. 100% Neem Oil tends to solidify in its’ container. Place the container in a bucket with hot water to liquefy the oil to use in a sprayer. Two tablespoons per gallon is the usual rate to get the job done.
Neem oil is made from the seeds of the Neem Tree (Azadirachta indica). The oil mixed with water and dish soap is sprayed at temperatures below 80° (F). Neem oil has fungicidal and bacteriological properties to either prevent or control certain types of bacteria and fungus.
Neem oil is effective to control fire blight which is a major issue on apple and pear trees.
Neem oil offers good control against powdery mildew, black spot, downy mildew, scab, anthracnose, rust, leaf spot, botrytis, tip blight and alternaria. These are a sample of fungal diseases which plague fruit and ornamental trees.
As an insecticide, Neem Oil is detrimental to aphids, mealybugs, scale, different types of beetles, true bugs and caterpillars by disrupting their growth patterns. Most of the above insects will not reach adulthood and therefore no offspring. The oil itself smothers some of the insects by cutting off their air supply and eliminating insect eggs.
While standing upwind, spray the fruit trees from ground level to the branch tips.
Make sure the entire tree is thoroughly covered to insure control and effectiveness.
In a week to 10 days the trees will be sprayed again, using wettable sulfur.
Continue the process in another 7 to 10 days using elemental copper.
Spraying between intervals with seaweed emulsion and compost tea will strengthen the trees by building up the trees immune systems and handling stress.
The benefit is clear by enjoying healthy fruitful trees!