B. Rosie Lerner
Purdue Extension


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Managing Pests in Home Fruit Plantings

One of the biggest challenges to growing your own fruit crops is doing battle with the many diseases and insect pests that prey upon them. Even trees that did not crop this year due to freeze injury still need protection from pests.

Fungal and bacterial diseases can infect foliage, twigs and fruits. Some insects feed on foliage and/or fruit while others bore into twigs and/or fruit. A single fruit can be affected by multiple problems. Each species of disease or insect pest has its own mode of action, so you must match the appropriate management strategy by crop and pest.

Doesn't sound very encouraging, but armed with appropriate information, you can fight back. Purdue Extension has a terrific new edition of Managing Pests in Home Fruit Plantings (Bulletin ID-146). Co-authored by Purdue Extension specialists in plant pathology, entomology and horticulture, this collection of best management practices for fruit growing is a must-have resource for your garden library.

cover for home fruit plantings

New in this edition are excellent color photos that show the various stages of flower and fruit development, along with close-ups of symptoms, diseases and insect pests. There is a helpful section on cultural management strategies that promote healthy plant growth and minimize disease and pest pressure, thus reducing dependence on pesticides. For those who do choose to use pesticides in their management program, there is extensive information on safety and organic products, as well as conventional chemicals. So you'll know what to and when to do it, there are specific recommendations for apples, pears, stone fruits (peach, plum and cherry), grapes, strawberries, brambles (raspberry and blackberry), currants and gooseberries.
And there are many more links to online resources for fruit growers. Download your free copy today at



Writer: B. Rosie Lerner
Editor: Olivia Maddox