Fruit Trees are able to naturally defend themselves from most common fruit tree pests. If your trees are experiencing any stress they become more susceptible to pest infestations. This is nature’s way of selecting the best and healthiest organisms to persist into the future. As the steward of your yard and garden, you are taking on a huge responsibility to make sure that your trees are as healthy as they can possibly be. Doing so will not only prevent pest infestations, but you will be rewarded for your efforts as your trees become more productive.
Fruit Trees Naturally Defend Themselves From Common Fruit Tree Pests
Fruit trees are complex organisms with many complex processes all working together to grow and produce fruit that is coveted by people around the world, but pests also value your tree and the fruit it produces.
Tree roots are in constant search of water and nutrients and tree leaves take carbon from the air and convert it into sugar by using the energy that it collects from the sun. Both leaf and root are working together to provide everything your tree needs to be strong, healthy and productive. The complex process occurring in your fruit trees are protected by bark that acts as a shield from external influences. Healthy trees have sap moving through a tree’s roots, trunk, and branches that can flush out pathogens that try to attack your tree. Where two branches join, a ridge acts as a check valve to help keep pests from entering your tree from a pruning cut. Small hairs are present on the leaves of many fruit tree varieties that help prevent pests from feasting on your tree. These are only a few of the natural processes and evolutionary parts of your tree that help them prevent pest activity from getting out of control.
|Sap Can Flush Pathogens Out of Pruning Cuts|
Stressed Fruit Trees are More Susceptible to Pest Infestations
When fruit trees are healthy and productive they are able to naturally defend themselves from common fruit tree pests. On the flip side, fruit trees that are experiencing stress are less able to protect themselves from pest infestations.
Fruit tree stress comes from a variety of sources, the following are just a few to consider:
- Poor Drainage
- Physical damage
|Physical Damage Attracts Disease|
Natural Selection in Fruit Trees
Evolution is the process of naturally selecting the strongest organisms to persist into the future. Weak unproductive organisms become prey to stronger organisms and in time, organisms change and improve to better exist in their environments.
Humans have contributed to the evolution of many organisms in ways that both positively and negatively affect the future of mankind. For example, our breeding efforts have helped us develop larger, more desirable fruit varieties and healthier, more productive fruit tree varieties.
The use of chemical pesticides designed to eliminate unwanted pests that attack our fruit trees have also put stress on organisms that are beneficial to the health of fruit trees and the environment. Also, some pests, by natural selection, have become resistant to pesticides forcing us to find new, more effective ways of treatment. In some instances this resistance has resulted in use of higher concentrations of pesticides or the use of more toxic chemicals to get result similar to the ones that we could previously achieve with less toxic chemicals applied at a lower rate.
Mankind’s Responsibility to the Environment
The positive evolutionary contributions mentioned above have allowed humans to become the most dominant organism to have ever lived on this planet, but where there is great power there is an even greater responsibility to use that power for the good of the planet and all of the organisms that we share this planet with.
You may not be able to control all of the problems that exist in this world as a result of chemical pesticides, but your yard and garden is one space that you do have control. If you would like to grow and harvest your own fruit there are several things that you can do to ensure a strong, healthy, and productive fruit tree. The following are just a few to consider:
- Find a fruit tree variety that is suited for your climate
- Find a fruit tree that was grown, and handled properly
- Plant your fruit tree correctly
- Make sure your fruit tree is getting plenty of sun
- Make sure your fruit tree is getting plenty of water
- Don’t overwater your fruit tree
- Monitor your tree for symptoms of disease
Healthy Trees Will be Less Susceptible to Pests and More Productive
Understanding your role in your fruit tree’s health will help you work with nature instead of fighting against it. Not only will your tree be less susceptible to pests, but you will be able to enjoy a larger harvest of fruit, but the best benefit is that you will have done so without negatively affecting the environment.
As you can see, the rewards are great! Less pests, higher yields, and a healthier environment, and you are able to control these rewards. You have a huge responsibility as the steward of your yard and garden to ensure your fruit trees are strong, and healthy. Your efforts will ensure that your fruit tree has a long and productive life that will last for decades. Minimize factors that increase your fruit tree’s stress and your tree will naturally be able to protect itself from most common fruit tree diseases.
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