local pest pressure up this year
I just came back in from thinning some of the apple trees...pretty grim. The PC damage was severe, coupled with the low set/frost damage it will be a very light crop.
For the last 3 years I have had pretty good control using Surround. But this year we had a long stretch with lots of heavy rains after petal fall and keeping adequate coverage was not possible. I think that in combination with the earlier warm weather lined me up for trouble.
OFM also seems to be especially bad. They have been getting progressively worse for me the last few years, so perhaps I am just seeing classic exponential growth taking off. But I have been doing a great deal of shoot pruning for the last 3-4 weeks and every time I walk the grounds I find more damage...I need some new/additional strategy for this pest I think.
At least the leaf rollers seem to be in check...but it's a bit early to be confident on that.
On a side note, aphids:
these have always been an issue in the black currants during early growth, long before I see them anywhere else. We have reached over-production on them so I just let it go this year...they got crazy bad but the ladybugs came in right behind them in numbers I have never seen before around here. And I haven't seen any aphids anywhere else since then (they usualy appear in the younger apples by now)
small win, intersting but not much consolation.