Garden Tips

Apples have bad spots - fight and prevent Monilia rot

Apples have bad spots - fight and prevent Monilia rot

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If the apples are already rotting on the trees, this is of course a big disappointment for every hobby gardener, because these fruits are no longer suitable for harvesting.

Monilia rot causes apples to become moldy

In the most common cases, the cause is a tree fungus that spoils the fruit. It is the so-called Monilia fruit rot that is transmitted by the tree fungus called Monilia fructigena. The fungus penetrates the fruit through tiny injuries. Just a scab tear or the damage to the rind by wasps is enough for the fungus to cause trouble in the fruit. Wide brown rot places are delimited by a whitish and ring-shaped mushroom spore deposit and are the typical signs of fungal attack.

Fight Monilia rot

Infection with Monilia rot usually starts from plants and parts of plants that have already been infected. Therefore, remove all foci of infection regularly and meticulously.

Step 1:
As a preventive measure, in winter, take away the stunted fruits, which are referred to as so-called fruit mummies. Also collect the fallen apples. These fruits are often infected by the fungus and the new shoots become infected during flowering (transmission by spores).

Step 2:
Leaves of the infested tree that is on the ground must also be removed thoroughly. In this case, the recycling of leaves should end in the waste bin, not in the compost, so that the fungus cannot multiply further in the garden.

Step 3:
Cut diseased shoots back into the wood far below the infestation site.

Prevent Monilia fruit rot

Apple trees on a sunny meadow - The risk of infection with the Monilia fruit rot can already be reduced by planting apple trees. Decide on apple varieties that experience has shown are not very susceptible to Monilia fruit rot and plant them in a sunny and airy location. This improves ventilation and enables quick drying after rainfall. This makes fungi generally more difficult to infect the trees. For this reason, regular clearing of the tree tops is recommended.

Tip: However, make sure that you do not take such cutting measures while the trees are bearing fruit. Otherwise the apples could get sunburnt and start to rot.

Pay attention to a balanced fertilization of your apple trees. In addition, you can increase the resistance of your trees with special plant strengthening agents.

Since the fungus can penetrate the fruit through damaged areas, you should avoid injuries and wounds as much as possible. Such can be caused, for example, by apple tree pests, such as the apple wrapper, or birds. To keep them away from your fruits, you can, for example, attach bird protection nets to your trees.