Besides selecting the most disease resistant varieties, there are
a few simple things to do to have better apples.
- Fertilize under the outer edges of your trees. There are no feeder roots next to the trunk. A well fed tree stays healthier. (Adequate calcium in the soil also helps so that apples keep longer.)
- Pick up fallen fruit and compost, dispose of, or feed to livestock (where possible).
- Rake up leaves in the fall and compost them away from the orchard.
- Prune trees to encourage light and air to reach the inside of the tree.
- Provide bird nesting sites near your orchard. A variety of orchard companion type plants will attract native pollinator insects and also encourage birds to come and eat insect pests.