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Pluots oozing resin?  RSS feed

 
Posts: 119
Location: Huntsville Alabama (North Alabama)
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Any guidance on how to handle this?  It is a Flovor King Pluot in North Alabama. 
Any organic solutions and if not any other ideas?  It will be many years before this one bears fruit.
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Location: 3a
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Hi,
I recall my grandparents producing fruit trees doing this and they just left them. I’m not sure if that was the cure or just the uncertainty of what to do. Over time the sap would harden and us kids would break it off.

Is this due to surface damage? Or perhaps overwatering? If it’s surface damage then figure out how to prevent it. I’d leave them and let them harden like a scab and resist the temptation to wash them off.

I’d be VERY curious to see if there’s a tired & true solution to this rather than what I’ve suggested. ✌🏻
 
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Location: Australia, New South Wales. Köppen: Cfa (Humid Subtropical), USDA: 10/11
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Dennis Bangham wrote:Any guidance on how to handle this?  It is a Flovor King Pluot in North Alabama. 
Any organic solutions and if not any other ideas?  It will be many years before this one bears fruit.



It looks like borer damage. The grub can be killed by breaking off the resin to reveal the hole, then poke a bit of stiff wire into the holes repeatedly to mash the grub.

There are several natural and chemical based treatments available.

Stress can exacerbate the problem - that grass may be the culprit?
 
pollinator
Posts: 942
Location: Los Angeles, CA
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I get a lot of that with my stone fruit trees.  It may just be evidence of a very healthy tree, putting off too much sap because the tree is producing so well.  Is there actual evidence of borers? 

Trees produce sugars as a result of photosynthesis.  (You already know this, but bear with me).  When they fruit, much of those sugars are given to the production of big ripe peaches, pluots, apples . . . whatever.  But 60% of those sugars are actually transferred down into the root zone of the tree where they are either stored or secreted out into the soil in the form of root exudates.  Basically, the tree is feeding sugars to the microbial life that surrounds the roots.  Bacteria and fungi feed on those sugars, and in turn, provide minerals and other nutrients to the tree.  It's a symbiotic relationship, as fungi are unable to produce sugars themselves.

As the tree senses winter coming and the old tired leaves begin to shut down and fall off, the tree begins to pull as much of that sugar-filled sap down into the core of the roots.  This food source gets the tree through the winter, and when it breaks dormancy in the spring, all that wonderful sap gets pulled upward toward the branches where it will be needed to support a flush of blossoms and new growth. 

Right now, as the tree is preparing for winter, there is an excess amount of sap/sugar/food.  Your tree is literally leaking—it's squeezing out through the phloem and out through fissures in the bark.  Your tree isn't quite ready to pull it all down into the roots, but it's not needed to produce a bunch of fat fruit or put out a bunch of new leafy growth.  My hunch is that those blobs or sap are evidence of good things happening, not insect damage.  But I'm not there to take a good look at it, so don't take my word for it.  Pluots, apriums, apricots . . . they all tend to kick off a lot of excess sap when they are growing in ideal conditions (lots or water, lots of sunlight, healthy soil).

Before you start spraying, make sure that there actually are borers.  No reason to treat something that isn't a problem.
 
Dennis Bangham
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Location: Huntsville Alabama (North Alabama)
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Thanks Marco.  This is the healthiest of all my pluots and is three times the size of the others.  The others are doing ok but this one is exploding in height. They are all about to go through their 3rd winter.
All of my fruit trees are on drip irrigation and starting to loose leaves even though we are still in the low to mid-90s in temperature. So they may be getting ready for fall.  Thanks
 
Marco Banks
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If it's the healthiest of your trees, my hunch is that all that sap is evidence of good things (as I wrote above).  Plums and pluots seem to be very light sensitive.  Mine lose their leaves early as well.  As the days get shorter, they sense that the season is turning, even though we are no where near frost.   If it's had a good summer, the tree might be thinking, "I've put in a full year's work here --- I'm knocking off early for a long weekend."

Perhaps you might back off the water a little bit, or pull it back out away from close to the trunk.  Make your tree work a little bit harder to get a drink.

Keep feeding the soil: healthy soil = healthy plants.  I love the wood chip mulch in that picture.  So does the tree!  In my opinion, there is nothing better for building soil in an orchard than a generous annual application of wood chips to the soil surface.
 
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