Central Virginia Organic Gardener

"And 'tis my faith that every flower enjoys the air it breathes." - William Wordsworth, 1798

Sunday, May 26, 2013

An Old Technique?

Peaches are the most difficult fruit to grow organically.  There are a variety of pest and diseases that like nothing more than to attack a peach. In the past, I have used a variety of organic sprays (kaolin, anti-fungals, pesticides) to produce usable peaches. What we get, mostly, is usable peach flesh (that is, we have to cut out the bad parts).  But we do get enough for fresh eating (slices), cobbler, pie, crisps, sorbet and jam.  This year, I am trying an old barrier technique, paper bags. Growers have been bagging fruit for a long time, especially to get premium fruit (most often apples). Some recommend using plastic, zipper-seal bags, but these can cook (steam) your fruit on hot days.  Others suggest sewing netting or row cover bags, bu this is a lot more work and a determined squirrel can still defeat it (my dogs keep the squirrels at bay!).  So, I am using paper lunch sacks- they should provide protection and last for the season. I went into the garden with 40 or so lunch sacks and a stapler and bagged the best looking fruits. I will report on the outcome!
Happy gardening!

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