Last chance to prevent leaf curl!

Sometimes the months just seem to fly by, and before we know it spring approaches and there are promising buds starting to swell on our deciduous fruit trees – peaches, nectarines and plums. Lying in wait around those leaf buds are spores of the disease leaf curl, which leads to irreversible distorted and discoloured foliage, and reduced tree health and fruit yield. Leaf curl is a disease that needs to be prevented and late winter is your last chance to act, before the leaves are permanently damaged.

To prevent leaf curl developing on stonefruit trees like nectarines, peaches and plums, Yates Liquid Copper Fungicide or Yates Copper Oxychloride Fungicide can be sprayed over the trees between when the buds start to swell, and before and within one week before the buds opening. Timing is critical! This is your final window to prevent leaf curl disease, so keep an eye on your buds and get spraying.

Both products are broad spectrum fungicides and have the added benefit of preventing the disease ‘shot hole’ on stonefruit, so you’ll be multi-tasking your fruit tree protection in one spray.

To help refresh your stonefruit trees and get them ready for spring, cut back any dead or damaged stems or branches and remove any stems growing from below the graft.

Many dwarf varieties don’t require any pruning beyond this. Older or larger varieties will benefit from removing some of the branches that are growing towards the centre of the tree. This opens up the canopy, creating a vase shape and allowing more light and air into the middle of the tree. This helps to reduce disease and improve fruit yield.


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