Peach Insect Management
Peaches have a relatively short development period in Florida, but these fruits and trees are attacked by a variety of insect pests. Effective insect control is essential to protect maturing peaches, as well as the trees’ vigor each season, so it’s important for Florida’s peach growers to know which insects could damage their crops.
If you would like a detailed spray guide, please refer to Insect Management in Peaches.
Peach’s Insect Pests
Catfacing insects, such as stinkbugs, are known for causing damage that resembles a cat’s face due to surrounding healthy plant tissue continuing to grow after other tissue is injured. Early sprays for these insects are important—rapid leaf and fruit growth during this time can reduce the amount of pesticide contacted by the inspects between spray intervals.
Although spider mites aren’t major pests on Florida orchids, heavy infestations occur sporadically and can happen every year in some orchards or parts of orchards. Mite outbreaks typically follow pesticide application targeted to other pests. These outbreaks can include high populations of mites appearing at a rapid rate, so growers should monitor the orchard and pay close attention to trouble spots. Additionally, growers should use high volume sprays before mite populations become too high, as high populations are difficult to control (however, avoid unnecessary treatments).
Peach Tree Borer and Lesser Peach Tree Borer
Peach tree and lesser peach tree borers feed in the barks of trees; the peach tree borer attacks the trunk around 6 inches above soil to 3 inches below, while the lesser peach tree borer can be found on the upper trunk.
Borer sprays should thoroughly wet tree trunks and larger branches to be successful.
The white peach scale and San Jose scale are some of the most destructive peach pests in the state, as heavy infestations of these scales can potentially kill branches and entire trees. For more information on white peach scales’ life cycle and scouting for them, read White Peach Scale.
Adapted and excerpted from:
C. Gomez and R. F. Mizell III, “Brown Stink Bug Euschistus servus (Say) (Insecta: Hemiptera: Pentatomidae)” (EENY433), UF/IFAS Entomology and Nematology Department (rev. 02/2012).
R. F. Mizell, III, “Insect Management in Peaches” (ENY804), UF/IFAS Entomology and Nematology Department (rev. 06/2012).
Related Sites & Articles
- Florida Peach and Nectarine Varieties
- Peachtree Borers in the Home and Commercial Peach Orchard
- Training and Pruning Florida Peaches, Nectarines, and Plums
- Weed Management in Peach
- White Peach Scale, Pseudaulacaspis pentagona (Targioni) (Insecta: Hemiptera: Diaspididae)