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Are apple maggots picky?
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katmendeux
45 Posts
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1
October 6, 2020 - 12:09 pm

Was in Seattle a couple weeks ago, and noticed that a tree on the Burke Gilman Trail had lots and lots of great big red apples, so I cut into a couple of them expecting apple maggots. No damage. The other apples on this one tree looked good, too. No external dimples like apple maggots leave. Just a few feet away, a couple other trees had apple maggots. City Fruit takes care of some of the other trees on the Burke-Gilman, but these don't have footies or netting. If the apple maggots had wanted to get into the fruit, they could. So -- any ideas on why this tree did not get infected?

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davem
362 Posts
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2
October 6, 2020 - 8:29 pm

In my yard the apple maggots definitely prefer the thinner-skinned apples, which kind of makes sense.  I think the ripening date is also a factor (i.e. does it line up with apple maggot life cycles).  But this is just a gut sense, I haven't tried gathering any data.

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jafar
787 Posts
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3
October 7, 2020 - 10:23 am

I see a lot of season to season variation in apple pests.  This year codling moth doesn't seem as bad, but the apple maggots are doing their thing.

For me, maybe half or more of my Golden Russets are free or mostly free of apple maggot damage.  Probably 100% of the Honeycrisp are riddled with them.

That includes fruit on the same tree.

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jekahrs
80 Posts
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4
October 12, 2020 - 10:15 am

This year was the best so far. Part of the reason was that I culled the apples early rather then waiting for June drop. The result is that the apples were larger and there was much less drop which made it much easier to clean up the fallen apples and break the maggot/coddling moth. I also used the apple socks and the results was that at least a third had no moths or maggots. Usually 100% of the apples are damaged or ruined, so the socks were a mild success.

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John S
PDX OR
2849 Posts
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5
October 15, 2020 - 9:17 am

This was the first year in I don't remember how many that I used no fruit sox. It was my "control" year.   I had never seen apple maggot before.  Now it is rampant.  The codling moth population hasn't grown by nearly as much.  Next year I may try spraying the trees with the clay and putting fruit sox on just a few of them.

John S
PDX OR

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davem
362 Posts
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6
October 15, 2020 - 10:08 am

John S said
This was the first year in I don't remember how many that I used no fruit sox. It was my "control" year.   I had never seen apple maggot before.  Now it is rampant.  The codling moth population hasn't grown by nearly as much.  Next year I may try spraying the trees with the clay and putting fruit sox on just a few of them.

John S
PDX OR  

I also didn't do fruit sox this year due to other priorities.  The bugs definitely prefer some varieties over others.

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buzzoff
84 Posts
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7
October 20, 2020 - 4:14 am

Apple Maggots, Codling Moths, they have their preferences.

They love my Ashmead's Kernal, less so my Spitzenberg.

They can attack my Asian Pears, but often...they do not.

 

If I practice good hygiene they trouble me less.  Hard to achieve a permanent solution.

My neighborhood is packed with potential host trees.  Walnuts.  Cherries.  Hawthornes.

Not to mention all of the secretly growing Apples, and Pears.

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John S
PDX OR
2849 Posts
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October 21, 2020 - 4:49 pm

Most Americans move every 5 years last I heard. Probably more often now.   Most fruit trees were already on the property when they moved there, I think, and ignored. Certainly not properly taken care of .

The burden of fruit trees in the country? Deer.

The burden of fruit trees in town? Other people's neglected fruit trees means a lot more codling moth and apple maggot.

John S
PDX OR

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Rooney
Vancouver SW Washington
798 Posts
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October 22, 2020 - 10:21 am

John S said
Most Americans move every 5 years last I heard. Probably more often now.   Most fruit trees were already on the property when they moved there, I think, and ignored. Certainly not properly taken care of .

The burden of fruit trees in the country? Deer.

The burden of fruit trees in town? Other people's neglected fruit trees means a lot more codling moth and apple maggot.

I have to agree and I like the way you think! With any possibilities of having "shorter lived" fruit trees as a way to keep the ebb of pests into a more natural balance for the rest may now become possible through newly developed rootstocks. I think the invention in the link (in theory) might be one to do it.

Everything also said here by others just makes sense. It may be too much to expect, from a new-comer fly at least, to rid them from the city with-out removing the original host hawthorn trees that originally had the symbiotic relationship with before they made the jump to apples. Hawthorne's have tender skin so it makes sense to choose thicker skinned cultivars for resistance,

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NW Lady
Vancouver, WA
20 Posts
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10
October 25, 2020 - 3:53 pm

I recently read that maggots prefer red apples. 

I bag most of my apples so this seems to really decrease maggot as well as codling moth problems....   but.... after reading this, I went out and picked some galas ..bagged and unbagged.  Every single unbagged apple had bad maggot problems.  Most of the bagged ones had no problems... a few had VERY light maggot problem.   Then....  picked some bramley seedling apples.   None of the bagged apples had maggot issues... and only one of the unbagged ones had an maggot problem.

Not a huge sample but I thought it was interesting. 

so.... maybe there is some truth to the info that maggots prefer red apples.  I am considering using Kaolin clay next year.  ...maybe at least on my red to redish apples. 

Also read they don't bother really early apples as much as later maturing varieties. 

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John S
PDX OR
2849 Posts
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11
October 27, 2020 - 1:36 pm

Seems like they prefer later maturing, thin-skinned, red apples.

John S
PDX OR

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jafar
787 Posts
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12
October 27, 2020 - 4:43 pm

They seem to like all of my apples.

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JohannsGarden
17 Posts
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13
March 4, 2023 - 8:44 pm

I've noticed huge differences with some varieties consistently untouched and others consistently hit hard year after year.  That said, I found an all around decrease in apple maggot pressure when I started supplementing my apple trees with calcium (crushed oyster shell).  In Western Washington we really don't have enough calcium in the soil for apples and it translates to greater susceptibility to pests and canker because calcium deficiency weakens the cell structure in all parts of the tree.

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John S
PDX OR
2849 Posts
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14
March 5, 2023 - 10:39 am

Some varieties are really attacked. Sturmer Pippin, which is one of my very best keepers and a great apple IMHO, is devastated if I don't put fruit sox on.  With the fruit sox on, I still have a ton of them now in March. Winesap, on the same tree, wasn't bothered at all.  I've read in many sources that the thicker the skin, the less damage from bugs.  Fits in with what Dave M was saying.

John S
PDX OR

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Chris M
Philomath, OR
160 Posts
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15
March 5, 2023 - 10:42 am

What are the best apples for thick skin?

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John S
PDX OR
2849 Posts
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16
March 6, 2023 - 7:04 pm

Granny Smith, Jonagold(according to some), Winesap, Red "Delicious".

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JohannsGarden
17 Posts
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17
March 7, 2023 - 9:40 am

My 'Scarlet Sentinel' apple is one that has been remarkably unattractive to apple maggots.  The worst I've had was 'Gravenstein'.  It was so bad year after year that I couldn't even cut around the wormy bits because the fruit was so heavily infested.  I've also got a couple naturally dwarf wild found clones which I'm evaluating which have shown no signs of apple maggots in the fruit (I think one is actually M. ×dawsoniana).

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John S
PDX OR
2849 Posts
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18
March 7, 2023 - 4:34 pm

That's interesting. My Gravenstein isn't affected too badly.

JohN S
PDX OR

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JohannsGarden
17 Posts
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19
March 7, 2023 - 7:31 pm

I hear there are a lot of different 'Gravenstein' sports.  Could it be that they vary or susceptibility?  I didn't care for the flavor of it anyways so I ripped it out and am doing a high density fig trial plot where it was.

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