Permethrin on apples

osagebowMay 21, 2013

Hi all, new guy here from VA. I have scads of various moth larvae "loopers' (not tent worms) on my 10 year old apple tree. I would like to use something non-toxic to my kids. Directions on permethrin says not to use after petal fall. Why is this? Can it be incorporated into a young fruit and stay until harvest? Or does it affect fruit maturation?

Thanks in advance and I look forward to talking to y'all.
John, AKA osagebow

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austransplant(MD 7)

Hi John,

This is an issue that has been debated before on Garden Web, and to my knowledge no one has provided an official answer. Permethrin is permitted after petal fall on pears and on peaches and on a wide range of vegetables, so the prohibition on post-petal-fall application to apples surely is not based on the dangers of eating sprayed fruit. The most likely reason I've seen mentioned is that permethrin can lead to mite flare ups, since it kills beneficial predators. Whatever the reason, it seems that it has to be specific in some way to apples.

    Bookmark   May 21, 2013 at 1:24PM
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austransplant - I've heard that mite theory, too. It seems to be the only explanation.

    Bookmark   May 21, 2013 at 2:08PM
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Hmmm.....never had a mite flareup. I'm glad it isn't a problem with fruit development or safety of the crop then. I'm looking at a one-time application. The tree is a summer rambo with gold and red delicious graft branches for pollination, by the way. Have a few more trees and grafts 1~3 years old.
Will post results .

    Bookmark   May 21, 2013 at 7:56PM
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Thanks Austransplant and Itilton!
Permethin did the trick on the caterpillars, Surrounding woods has plenty of fat ones, though. Have a few codling moth damaged fruit I am removing, and a nice even june drop helping me thin, also. Should be posting some nice harvest pics next month. Also successfully added a goldrush scion,to that tree, but the Albermarle pippin graft hasn't taken yet. I have new whips of both those varieties going, and added one of them ( son removed labels, don't know which lived lol...)to a 3 year old johnathan. .

    Bookmark   June 2, 2013 at 5:20PM
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