Why do the apples turn black on the tree? Maybe because of a lack of nutrients or a massive invasion of insect pests. However, the most common reason for apples to rot and fall prematurely is a dangerous fungal infection - moniliosis.
The second name of the unpleasant scourge is fruit rot of trees or monilial burn. Rapidly spreading through the garden, the disease can in a short time hit most of your apples and pears - this is especially important in warm and humid weather. What kind of disease is it and how to fight it?
Monilioz (fruit rot) of an apple tree - causes and signs
If you see that the fruits of the apple tree right on the branches are covered with spots, which gradually darken and grow, and then merge into one large brown spot, covered with clearly pronounced convex circles of white spores - this is moniliosis. In the future, these apples soften, rot from the inside, the fruits fall off or are completely mummified on the branches.
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During the season, such an infection can kill up to 70-80% of the harvest! And its causative agent is a marsupial fungus, the spores of which are easily spread by rain, wind and insects. Although "in all its glory", the disease manifests itself in late summer and autumn, the trees themselves become infected during the entire growing season, and the fungus is activated in early spring, having survived well in infected fruits and branches (it is not afraid of low temperatures).
In addition to pome seeds (apples, pears, quinces), moniliosis is also capable of infecting stone fruits (cherries, plums, cherries), although the types of fungus that causes the disease are different.
The pathogen infects plants primarily through wounds and lesions in the bark or in fruits. On a new plant, it begins to develop intensively, and within a few days, spores that can spread through the garden to healthy plants ripen. It is especially easy to spread the fungus at high humidity and a temperature of about 15-20 ° C. It affects not only the fruits in the second half of summer - in the spring with the same ease the disease spreads to the leaves, fruit twigs and inflorescences, which also later turn brown, wither and die.
As the crop ripens, the number of affected fruit increases. If the rotten apple remains hanging on the tree, then the fungus penetrates the fruit sprig (fruit) and affects the nearby shoots, which, in turn, not being cut in time, become sources of infection for young twigs and inflorescences in the spring. Even in fallen form, damaged fruit can spread the infection in the garden for at least two years.
In Russia, the highest severity of moniliosis is noted in the north-west, in the central regions, in the regions of the southern Urals, in the Altai, in Siberia and in the western part of the North Caucasus.
The fungus can also develop in apples taken from a tree and placed for winter storage. The affected fruits become shiny black, their flesh turns brown. During storage, white concentric circles on the fruits affected by moniliosis are not formed.
Monilioz (fruit rot) of an apple tree - means of struggle and prevention
Of course, as in the overwhelming majority of cases, the best way to combat moniliasis is its competent prevention. It is always easier to prevent the development of the disease than to treat it for a long time.
For a start, it is worth asking about apple varieties that are relatively resistant to moniliosis (unfortunately, there are no completely resistant varieties). It can be Idared, Slavyanka, Grandma, Pepin saffron, Kandil Sinap, Uralets, Parmen winter gold. Interestingly, summer apple varieties suffer from this disease earlier in the season, and later in the winter.
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Thickening of plantings contributes to the rapid development of fruit rot. Hence, one of the necessary measures for the prevention of moniliosis is proper location of fruit trees on the site (if possible, choose elevated and well ventilated places), as well as timely formative and sanitary pruning of apple trees, as a result of which cron illumination and air permeability will be improved.
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It is imperative that you take care of tree circles, regularly dig up the soil and feed trees with macro and microelements. These measures reduce the risk of apple damage, not only fruit rot, but also other dangerous diseases.
The whole vegetation period needs to monitor the condition of the fruit trees - collect and burn fallen leaves and infected flowers, as well as the carrion with signs of damage, promptly remove damaged branches and shoots.
During harvesting, the fruit should be handled with care and no apples should be deposited with any signs of damage (cracks, broken skin, dents).
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However, even following the rules of agrotechnology, it is not always possible to avoid the spread of moniliosis - gardeners are not able to influence the vagaries of the weather, besides the pathogen can migrate from a neighboring site. Therefore, often without the use of chemicals, fungicides can not do.
To prevent early spring infection, spray trees with copper-containing preparations (for example, 3% Bordeaux liquid) or Horus, Phtalan, Kuprozan, Abiga-Pik (according to the instructions). At least 2 liters of solution should be consumed per tree during each treatment.
3-4 days before the start of flowering, the apple tree needs to be sprayed again with Bordeaux liquid, but already with 1% solution. Instead, the drug can also be used Fitolavin. If you notice a drop, spraying must be repeated.
It is especially important to protect fruit trees from the development of scab, which can provoke moniliosis.
A month before harvesting, spend preventive garden spraying. Use Fitosporin-M or iodine solution (dilute 10 ml of the drug in 10 liters of water and evenly spray the trees). Repeat spraying after 3 days.
In the autumn, after harvesting, treat the trees with a solution of copper sulfate (100 g per 10 l of water, consumption - 2-3 l per tree), which will help to destroy the remains of the infection.
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Moniliasis (fruit rot) of garden trees is a very dangerous disease, which also spreads quickly and easily affects neighboring plants. It is much easier to engage in the prevention of its occurrence in a timely manner and to carefully follow the agricultural technology, than to try to get rid of the misfortune for a long time later.