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Brandon Monterosso
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I have been following on youtube for a long while now, and finally got around to registering on the forums and decided to start participating. Hey'lo all 

Well, I do have a question. I have a couple of fruit trees in my back yard. Some background information: we decided a while back that we wanted to turn our back yard into a food forest! With that said, we have two existing fruit trees here in Michigan(near Detroit), an apple and a pear tree. I did a bunch of research on pruning and finally got things under control, but I am having two problems and was looking for advice.

The pear tree seems to have some kind of a black mold the shows on the leaves and the fruit never comes to term and splits open and is covered inside and out with it. I was thinking that creating a lovely guild under and around it, including all kinds of nitrogen fixers and other crops, might allow via chop and drop, and mulching for the tree to get stronger and bear fruit. Does this sound reasonable? I have had people tell me to just cut it down, but what I see is a tree that has been deprived nutrients for so many years that it is starving for some love. I just don't know

The apple tree, has always had tons of fruit, however it's covered in bugs, worms etc and the fruit gets eaten up, and isn't any good. I don't want to spray, I believe from my research and learning about permaculture over the past couple years now, that by modeling nature, and guilds around and under etc, that a balance will be found and there will eventually be fruit that isn't hit by insects. This is just book knowledge and this is going to be my first practical experience, which is exciting  I guess what I am looking for is possibly someone that might have had a similar experience that might be able to share what they learned. My father grew up in Michigan's UP, and I lived there in my childhood, he has told me that while hiking for miles in the back country, he would occasionally come across fruit trees like Apples that had NO bugs at all, I have to believe this is partly due to location and isolation; however, some has to do with Mother Nature's perfect natural state and it being with the  beautiful balance that she maintains.

Thank you for any advice, and I can't wait to learn from anyone and everyone here!
 
Jan Sebastian Dunkelheit
Posts: 201
Location: Germany/Cologne - Finland/Savonlinna
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PS: Just read your text again. It is a pear not an apple tree that gets the black mold. I'm sorry. I don't have any experiences with pear trees.
 
                        
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Hey folks!
 
Brenda Groth
pollinator
Posts: 4437
Location: North Central Michigan
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you can set traps in your apple tree for the worms, there are homemade ones you can do with 1 part molasses to 9 parts water in a jar hung by a wire, but also you can buy tangelfoot and put sticky red or yellow traps with tanglefoot on them to catch the bad guys.

i'm not sure but the mold sounds like you might have too wet an area, or it might be a fungus..

you may have to find a fungal spray for it, but do remember fungal sprays will also affect the fungal balance in your soil..maybe if you tarp under the tree when you spray it to prevent a lot of the spray from getting in your soil? not sure if that would work

I think there might be some natural fungal/mold ideas if you google them??

I'm thinking possibly wood ash? but that is only a guess..

pears don't like much in the way of fertilizer, they prefer a limey soil, so you might add some lime to the area around the pear, also clean up any dead leaves that have the fungus on them and burn or send them to the landfill, don't compost them.

pears do like good air circulation so you might open it up if it is a bit crowded also, i would TRY to save it..as it is full grown and bearing, but if you can't don't kick yourself if you have to remove it..and then if you buy any more , make sure you look for resistant strains.s

is it really wet around that pear tree? that can cause molds too.
I'm also from Michigan but up by Traverse city, but our neighbors are seasonal from your area..
 
Brandon Monterosso
Posts: 30
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Great info thanks, yes it is wet, we are just beginning setting up micro-swales I didn't know that about them not liking wet... so I can fix that for sure, and its already opened up I have been grooming it since last year and that is taken care of, regarding the lime, that is a great idea too. I will get that going as well. I just believe that I can make it thrive if I do the right thing and allow it to achieve its greatest potential Traverse City is beautiful!
 
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