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Growing Fruit Trees and Citrus Trees

from: David Smith

Fruit trees can be divided broadly into two categories; citrus
and deciduous. Once, every household grew several fruit trees,
but now suburban blocks are much smaller and so space is
limited. Citrus trees don't take up much room and are fairly
hardy. They will grow in a variety of soils, but don't like wet
feet, so if you have clay soil you might have to build it up to
encourage the moisture to drain away. href=""> Citrus Forum

Lemons, oranges, grapefruit, mandarin and kumquats all make
delicious marmalades and are packed full of vitamins when eaten
fresh. They last on the tree for ages too, so there is no
problem with storage. Kumquats can be grown in a large container
and though the fruit is too bitter to eat fresh, makes great

The main pests to attack citrus are aphids and shield beetles.
If you notice a black coating like soot growing on the leaves of
your citrus, it is sure to be caused by aphids. They exude a
sticky substance that is favorable to the growth of sooty mold.
Spray the tree with white oil and the problem should clear up.

Shield beetles can be identified by their pungent odor. They are
large beetles and can be green, brown or red with black
markings, depending on the stage of their life cycle. They will
eat all the young leaves, severely retarding the growth and
fruiting of the tree, so spray as soon as you notice them. Be
careful not to get too close, as they tend to squirt an acid
stream that can cause painful injury, when disturbed. Rogor or
Lebaycid are two systemic sprays for these pests.

Deciduous fruit trees are the apple, pear, and stone fruits.
Because they are dormant in the winter, they can be grown in
areas of severe frosts, though a late frost could damage the
blossom. All have glorious blossom and the leaves of many turn
yellow, orange or scarlet in the fall. With the addition of
fresh fruit, what more could you want in a tree?

The fruit will encourage birds to your garden too, and you might
have to share the fruit with them. Otherwise, light netting is
available by the roll. Four iron stakes joined over the top with
poly-pipe makes a good support for the netting.

Fruit flies are the main pest to attack stone fruits like
peaches, plums, apricots and nectarines. There are different
ways of controlling this pest, the two main ones being to spray
the fruit regularly with Rogor or Lebaycid, or hang fruit fly
baits in the tree. These attract and kill the male fly, so there
are no grubs to burrow into the fruit and spoil it.

Apples and pears are attacked by the codling moth, which lays
its eggs just under the skin of the immature fruit. When the
grubs hatch they eat their way through the fruit leaving a brown
tunnel. Carbaryl, Malathion or Lebaycid are the sprays to use
for codling moth.

If you would love a fruit tree, but are short on space, dwarf
apples are available in some areas. They only have one or two
short stems, but are covered in normal size fruit.

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