untreated apples and apples dropping
We moved into our house this April and it has turned out that we have a full size apple tree in our backyard. Since we didn't know what kind of tree it was until we saw the apples, we haven't done anything to the tree at all this year.
I've been reading a lot (and am scaring myself lol) on the many many problems and pests apple trees have. It seems many of the apples have worms, and we're losing lots of apples from the tree and have been for some time. Most of the apples falling now seem to be bad or rotting or wormy, so I wonder if the tree is somehow aborting the bad apples? We are constantly picking up bad apples (I'd say at least 10 a day). There do appear to be good apples on the tree however, without brown spots or any holes that would be an entrance for a worm.
Since we haven't done anything to the tree, is it likely we will have any sort of harvest this fall, or is it likely that all of the apples will be wormy? I guess we'll see what happens. Does the coding moth (I think that's the one that causes all the problems with the worms) lay eggs just once, or are apples that are currently healthy/worm free still at risk?
Looking ahead to next year, it seems from everything I read that it says you MUST spray with a pesticide every 10 days or you will have your whole harvest ruined. I can't say that I love the idea of spraying the tree every week and a half, and really don't know how such a thing would be feasible with such a tall tree (I'd say it's at least a good 18 feet), along with the fact that we have a fence now and to spray one of the sides I'd have to have a ladder on my neighbor's property.
What do people do? I'm not an orchardist, but still, it would be nice to eat some of these apples. It's a pretty tree, but I want to get something out of it, especially since I'm having to continually dispose of rotten apples each day.
Also, while the tree does seem healthy as a whole, it does drop yellow leaves, even in the summer. Is that normal? It's just a leaf here or there, but with such a large tree the leaves add up and our yard is always kind of a mess. Is that just the way it is?