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ants in nectarine fruit

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marilyn starts with ...
Hi I have a three year old nectarine tree this is the first year the fruit has stayed on the tree.The fruit is green but is starting to shrivel we dont know if this is from the heat or the tiny black ants we found in the seed pod when we opened one up has any body got any ideas.I am learning as i have not had much to do with growing fruit. Thankyou.
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maz1
north east victotia
26th January 2008 10:09pm
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John says...
lack of water. spray pest oils for the ants. this will kill the other pests to you havent noticed yet.
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John10
SB South Australia
2nd February 2008 7:25pm
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marilyn says...
Hi John Thankyou for your advice.The fruit started falling off so I have picked it all,they are egg size,soft ones taste ok,skin is like leather.I thought if we pruned it a bit harch the roots may establish more,we do water it every night,what fertiliser would you recomend,I have been using a fruit tree fertiliser maybe it needs more. Thanks allot Marilyn.
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maz1
north east victotia
3rd February 2008 2:31pm
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John says...
What you did is the same as my neighbor. The tree would probably have now grown large branches all over the place. This autumn reprune the tree not so harse. You need to do this for the next 2 years to regain the shape you want back. As for the roots, they sound ok but try some seasol (seaweed extract). As for fertizer a complete D with an adition of 10% potast will make a complete fertilizer for you. By the way egg size fruit is not bad, mine were from that to a duck and becuase of my conditions here my trees take an extra 2 years to fruit.
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John10
SB South Australia
3rd February 2008 2:42pm
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Dekka says...
Pardon my ignorance, but what is a 'complete D'?
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Dekka
Newcastle
3rd February 2008 5:02pm
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marilyn says...
Hi John Thanks Marilyn
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maz1
north east victotia
3rd February 2008 7:15pm
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John says...
complete D fertizer. its manufactered, but when mixed with about 10% pot ash makes a very good and cheap alround fertilizer that can be used on almost any plant.
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John10
SB South Australia
4th February 2008 11:43am
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Carl says...
John
You mention a "Pest Oil" I have not heard of that before? I have the same Little black ant problem. Thanks
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Carl1
 
16th March 2008 12:24am
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Patricia says...
We have lots of ash from our wood burning stove, is it good fertilizer for all types of fruit trees, if not which ones do not like it.
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Patricia6
central Victoria
6th May 2008 8:52pm
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Dekka says...
Wood ash will probably effect pH as it is alkaline.
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Dekka
Newcastle
7th May 2008 8:14am
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david says...
Do black ants eat peach fruit flesh. thanks for you answers
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david11
adelaide
6th January 2009 10:24am
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John says...
Only if its already been damaged then they come for the sugar.
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John20
Perth
6th January 2009 11:13am
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rinne says...
Hi, there is an orange mushroom growing on the trunk of my nectarine tree. Is this bad? What can i do to help the tree? Or do I have to cut the entire tree down? I've got an apricot tree right next to it - will the problem spread to my apricot tree?
Thanks and Regards.
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rinne
Melbourne
2nd February 2009 1:07pm
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John I. says...
HI All,
Something is eating the skin off all my immature nectarines. It doesn't appear to be ants and I can't find any bugs on the tree. Anyone know what it might be?
Pictures - Click to enlarge

Picture: 1
  
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JohnI
Melbourne
14th October 2009 8:41pm
#UserID: 1975
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Ellen says...
slugs can caused damage such as this . They did it with my Sweet Leaf Bush plant.
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Ellen
Smithfield
15th October 2009 8:00am
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John I. says...
Thanks Ellen, but there are no signs of slugs. Given that almost every piece of fruit on the tree has been damaged (its a dwarf nectarine) I would have thought I would find at least one culprit. The only bugs I can see are a few ants and they don't seem interested in the fruit.
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JohnI
Melbourne
15th October 2009 9:46am
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Jantina says...
Hi John 1, slugs hide in things and under the soil during the day,have you tried going out with a torch at night? Multigard has petsafe slug and snail pellets ( the active ingredient is iron). Sometimes earwigs chew on things if there are a lot of them. How big is your tree ? Some fruit I protect with little bags I make from old net curtains from the op shop (one mans trash is another mans treasure etc etc).
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Jantina
Mt. Gambier S.A.
15th October 2009 10:11am
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John I. says...
Hi Jantina,
I would have thought that slugs would have left a slimy path where they have been (particularly on the fruit itself). There is no indication of this. We do get a lot of earwigs but I've found no signs of them either. I thought maybe thrip but the damage is more extensive than the sample pictures I've seen of thrip damage.

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JohnI
Melbourne
15th October 2009 11:37am
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Tiggerbow says...
My dwarf nectarine has very similar damage. I thought it was because the tree also has leaf curl.
I think it is slug damage - we have been going on slug patrol each night and the first night we found approx. 200 slugs, the next about 100 and then considerably less after this.
The slime marks left by the slugs are a bit hard to see as the slugs are actually quite small.
I suggest slug hunting at night with a torch and using the Multigard slug pellets.
This years 'crop' is a write off but hope to get something next year.
Good luck !
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Jodie
Perth WA
15th October 2009 1:57pm
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John I. says...
Thanks Tiggerbow (and Jantina),
The consensus seems to be slugs. It's definitely not because of leaf curl, I managed to spray in time to prevent leaf curl. I think my crop this year is also a write off, but if I can confirm the problem then I have a chance to prevent it next year.
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JohnI
Melbourne
15th October 2009 2:30pm
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Jacquelynn says...
John, I think you may have caterpillar damage. I have the same problem - immature fruit with skin eaten off. Your picture is exactly the same as my damage. I looked on the underside of leaves in the area and found one caterpillar - I think it is a looper variety as it has legs only at the top and bottom, therefore loops when it moves. I can actually see the path the caterpillar has taken on my baby nectarines. It is hard to pick, but if you have a freshly eaten one you can easily see the eating lines. In older ones the flesh dries a bit and maybe starts to look like dry scab damage. My caterpillar is blue with yellow stripes. They are hard to spot and when you remove them they spray a silky thread which is quite strong. Happy hunting!
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Jacquelynn
melbourne
25th October 2009 2:55pm
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John I. says...
Thanks Jacquelynn,
You could be right. I removed all the damaged fruit (about 80% of the crop) and I put out slug pellets (and a beer trap) but this hasn't worked. I'll take a close look for caterpillar tomorrow.
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JohnI
Melbourne
25th October 2009 9:57pm
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John I. says...
Ok, I finally discovered the cause... earwigs... hundreds of the little pests. Anyone have a good (organic) earwig remedy?
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JohnI
Melbourne
26th October 2009 9:49pm
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Julie says...
I've never seen earwigs, but I believe they like to hide in damp, dark places. You can trap them by making hiding places from rolled up cardboard, or almost anything that will roll up.

Empty them and destroy next day. Or feed to the chooks, if you have any.
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Roleystone WA
28th October 2009 8:44pm
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Elf says...
Earwigs are evil - I used to think they were cute until I started gardening. They eat all my seedlings. Here were some ideas I found on the net (have yet to implement them). I tried pyrethrum spray, but it didn't make much diff.

Easy:
http://hubpages.com/hub/How-To-Get-Rid-Of-Slugs-and-Earwigs

There are a couple of ideas on this page:
http://www.burkesbackyard.com.au/forum/1/1/General-gardening/topic/179
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Elf
Albury
1st November 2009 4:52pm
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John I. says...
Thanks Elf, I might give the can of soft drink a try.
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JohnI
Melbourne
4th November 2009 12:50pm
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Elf says...
No probs, hope it helps. I have started saving my tin cans so I can put some earwig enticing liquids in them. Awful problem.
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Elf
Albury
5th November 2009 2:15pm
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Jannette says...
Hi John, this happened to our nectarine last year, and it turned out to be earwigs. Organic solution for earwigs: Jars at the base of trees and shrubs, half filled with water, and a dash of tuna oil (found in the fishing aisle of department stores). Earwigs are attracted to the smell, fall in and drown in droves! Only empty jars when getting too full, as the smell of rotting earwigs seems to attract more of them.
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Jannette
Christies Beach SA
28th December 2009 3:12pm
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Eileen says...
My tree, grown from a stone is about five years old and about 8ft tall, trained as espalier in large polytunnel. Last year had lots of fruit, nearly all damaged in the same way as you describe. I put it down to slugs, cut off the grazed skin, stewed and froze the fruit.This year even more blossom and fruitlets. Yesterday I thinned out the fruit, and pruned. There are no signs of slugs, but a lot of the fruit is damaged. I wondered about earwigs and set traps last night. None found. Long report online about thrips - too complicated for the layman, but it may be the answer. Shall have another look. Good luck!
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Eileen
West Cork, Ireland
11th May 2010 9:59pm
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Bee says...
Fascinating reading.

I have this problem for the second year in a row. Very healthy nectarines. great crop. All damaged by the same markings.

We have tons of ear wigs. The kids love hunting them. I will send my husband off for some tuna oil and report back if it works.

I've also been thinking about getting some chooks. Perhaps they will help.

Bee
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Bee2
Vic
15th October 2010 1:36pm
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amanda says...
I'm curious - why do some gardens have loads of earwigs causing problems and not others? I have a few/the odd earwigs around the place - but the population never seems to get get out of control and they don't give me any grief - I wonder what eats earwigs etc? Are they attracted to certain living conditions or such?

Just thinking out loud here...maybe a permaculturalist can help? :)
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amanda19
Geraldton Mid West WA
15th October 2010 5:45pm
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amanda says...
There is a feature article on earwigs in the Nov issue of Gardening Australia.

(I just learnt that my earwigs are native one's and good guys!)
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amanda19
Geraldton Mid West WA
16th October 2010 12:43pm
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Chris says...
Have noticed a clear gell oozing from fruit (3/4 ripe)near stem on cutting open have a grub 1/2 inch long cream to pinkish. What is this about 1/2 my fruit infected. Is this fruit fly?
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Chris27
Richmond Victoria
16th January 2011 12:09am
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hayden says...
yes this is fruit fly. pull off all affected fruit and dispose of properly. spray and net the rest.
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Hayden
bateau bay nsw
16th January 2011 9:34pm
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lcra9254 says...
I just trimmed my nectarine tree, it's the 4th yr but it was so bad I had to. It also has a fungus or something, it even deforms the fruit. Puts brown streaks or spots and sometimes dents. Sometimes there is a sap looking like stuff coming from the spots. What is that? What can I do and was it ok to trim right now?
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lcra9254
Bakersfield
15th July 2011 9:06am
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Eileen says...
Further to my previous report (May 2010). I had another huge amount of blossom this spring, but I had been unable to prune properly the previous autumn, so had far too much growth, and decided I would have to prune when it was in blossom. As a result there were fewer fruits, but they grew to the size of large oranges. I was away in June and my polytunnel was watered by a neighbour. The weather was dull, and I think she probably was too generous in her watering because the beautiful big ripe fruits went mouldy. I wonder if it might have been helpful to remove some of the foliage to allow more air to circulate? I cut away the mould, and the fruit was juicy and delicious, so at least I know that it should be possible to grow very good nectarines from a stone. I should mention though that the huge growth is hard to manage! I still have to sort out the problem of earwigs (?) - not quite so bad this year. I intend to try Jannette,s remedy next season.
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Eileen
West Cork, Ireland
27th July 2011 5:49am
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copingwithclay says...
I have been using a couple rings of sticky paper ('masking') tape wrapped around fruit tree trunks to stop the crawling bugs from reaching fruit or tender leaves. Many kinds of bugs, including ants, get their multiple feet stuck on the tape when it is snuggly wrapped around smooth. round places on the trunk. Of course the sticky side faces outward and the ends are lapped over to secure the tape ring. I use 1" wide tape, but wider tape is also good. I try to avoid the wider tape because small lizards that also climb get stuck sometimes, and it is easier to free them from narrower tape. After a week or 2 the tape may begin losing it's grip, so I just put a fresh wrap on top. Because a large slug population here also goes up the fruit tree trunks, I have to battle them. The tape is no problem for slugs, so I tried to keep them off the fruit trees with a different plan. Our grocery stores bag the purchased goods in very thin plastic throw -away bags. I very loosely wrapped a bag around each of several fruit tree trunks and fastened them in place with a bit of tape. I then sprayed some aerosol ant poison on top of the bag, and all the way around the very fluffy bag. I thought that the slug's big brain would think that this fluffy, stinky, plastic bag was definitely not 'tree trunk' and make a U-turn back downward. The slugs agreed. I spray a fresh coat of the stinky mist after a week or so. I have seen no more slime trails heading up the trees that had this. As far as having a Texas Slug Round-up, once in a while I look under any kind of hiding place, such as beneath plant pots, and use a serrated knife to slice the uncovered slugs. If I return in 1/2 hour to the uncovered spots, there is a gathering of surviving slugs having freshly sliced slugs for lunch. Cannibals get sliced also.
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growandtell
Texas
29th July 2011 1:19pm
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Tania says...
My nectarines are just getting ripe, picked two today that are ripe, pulled them apart and they are rotting in the seed? (stone in the middle is rotten)...what causes this? many thanks
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Tania3
Albany WA
23rd January 2012 7:37pm
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john says...
On very hot days the stone ,because it has a specific heat less than the watery flesh, gets very hot and burns the inside. Make sure there are no larvae as then it is fruit fly infestation.
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24th January 2012 4:20pm
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