NOW IS THE TIME
By Eunice Messner
NOT ALL WHITE MEALY BUGS ARE THE SAME
There is a new invader called Grapevine Mealy bug that should not be confused with the grape mealy bug or long tailed mealy bug. The grape-vine mealy bug can cause much more damage since it is more prolific and thus creates more honeydew on the fruit and leaves; eventually sooty mold also develops. They look like small 1/8" white ovals with jagged edges. The adult male looks similar to a small wasp and is typically seen hovering around grapevines in search of a mate. Their winter months are spent hidden under bark or on roots. They can be controlled by insecticides but a pheromone based trap will more readily detect their presence and cut down on the number of males attempting to increase their population.
Armstrong Garden Centers sell two traps (Oak Stump Farms Grapevine Mealy bug Traps for $19.99 but one trap is sufficient for the home owner. Hang the trap about 5' off the ground. Grapevines are a preference of these pests but
they can also attack other fruits.
A SECOND REFRIGERATOR has enabled me to store Fuyu-type persimmons, apples and kiwi for long periods of time.
APPLES The fuji apples tastes as good now as when first picked. These I store in plastic bags inside of a larger plastic container. Not all apples keep this well. The rhinoceros-like skin of Granny Smith enables it to be a very long keeper, but I just didn't like it and took it out. I learned Frank James loved this apple so I tried it again. I still don't like it.-Sorry, Frank, we differ there. I can almost say the same for 'Gala.' It is too sweet for me and very small in our area, although it could partly be because I have it on M9 rootstock. Yellow Delicious' overproduced and was not a good keeper - Gone!
Braeburn was very good but it developed "Perpetual Fruit Set". I would no more than be through thinning the fruit when more blossoms would occur. Too much work. Gone! Mutsu was too big and the fruit dropped off the tree
before it was ripe - Gone!
Jonathan was a shy producer - Gone!
Jonagold, very tasty, but not a good keeper - Going.
Winter Banana - not an eating apple. Excellent pollinizer and for sugar free pies, but, Gone!
Anna, I keep it only because my daughter likes it for eating in lunches and I like looking at its beautiful shape when
it is unpollinized by Golden Dorsett- Gone!
Beverly Hills, only good for about two weeks before it gets mushy. Good for applesauce, but - Gone!
Arkansas Black, poor producer Gone!
Pettingill- good apple if you like them somewhat tart. Tree collapsed - Gone!
I grew two others whose names I've forgotten, but the trees were sickly. Gone!
I'm grateful for Fuji - my favorite apple!!
KIWI I don't grow them but a friend gives me a bucketful. I have also bought two flats from Roger and they keep forever in these easy to store flat boxes.
PERSIMMONS I store them ripe but still firm. I'm still eating these in March. But there is a big gap in my attempt to have year-around fruit for dessert. All of my cherimoya dropped in the extremely hot summer in Anaheim Hills. Another hotter summer is forecast -- something to do with ozone depletion?