Dr. Curtis E. Swift, Area Extension Agent (Horticulture)
Updated March 15, 2011
Colorado State University Extension Tri River Area
Here is a list of individuals who prune backyard fruit trees and grape vines (i.e. non-commercial) in Mesa, Delta, Montrose, and Ouray Counties. This list will be updated as I receive information from other qualifed pruners. If you are interested in being added to the list, drop me a note at Curtis.Swift@colostate.edu and I'll send you the survey you need to fill out.
Spinosad - an organic insecticide
If you have problems with wormy apples, cherries, peaches or nectarines, and want to use an organic product check out the information on Spinosad. This material is labeled for fruit, ornamental, flowers and even vegetables.
Before you buy blueberry plants for your garden you need to learn more about these plants. Check out the new fact sheet on growing blueberries in western Colorado.
- Grape Varieties for Cold Areas in Colorado
Vitis labrusca varieties are hardier than V. vinifera varieties, while the French hybrids (V. vinifera hybrids) are somewhere in between. This Web Page gives suggestions on varieties to plant in the Western Colorado based on cold hardiness.
- The home page of the Colorado Association for Viticulture and Enology is at www.rmavv.org
- The Cost of Growing Wine Grapes in Western Colorado - October 2010
- Further information on grape production in Colorado can be found at http://www.coloradowine.com.
Fruit Tree culture
This list is a compilation of tree fruit cultivars most likely to do well in cold locations in Colorado. This information is provided by Dr. Harold Larsen, CSU Western Colorado Research Center, Orchard Mesa.
Fruit trees are fertilized to guarantee continued growth and fruit production. The application of nitrogen in the spring prior to bud break helps maintain this productive status. The amount of nitrogen to apply depends on the growth the previous season. Specifics on the amount of nitrogen to apply are provided.
Knowing when to harvest apples and pears has always been a problem for the backyard growers. This page provides answers to this dilemma.
Pesticide labels often provide application rates on a per acre or 100 gallon basis. This web page provides conversions for mixing smaller quantities of sprays.
Pruning is done to improve both the fruit crop and tree appearance, but is a practice frequently neglected and misunderstood. This publication is designed to assist the home orchardist by providing guidelines on the pruning and training of peach, apricot, almond, plum, and cherry trees from planting to maturity.
The following is a list of recommended tree fruit rootstocks for western Colorado. Rootstocks that are not recommended, but often used in this area, are also listed. Research reports and personal experience of the authors have been used to generate this list.
A fruit tree commonly produces many more blossoms than should be permitted to set as fruit. Thinning is thus necessary to maintain production and tree health.
Fruit doubling is seen in apple, pear, peach, sweet and tart cherry, and plum. Even quadruple fruit have been observed in peach and sweet cherry. This problem is the result of stress the previous summer when fruit buds are developing.
Fruit Tree Diseases and Insect Problems
- Spray Guides for the management of insect, mite and disease pests in backyard orchards
Bacterial Spot, caused by the bacterium Xanthomonas campestris pv. pruni, is a disease of stone fruits. Apricots, peaches, nectarines, and plums are more severely affected than cherries. Cultivars vary greatly in susceptibility to damage for each of these crops. However, no cultivar is completely immune when environmental conditions are highly favorable to disease development.
trees, Blackheart Injury, and rootstocks
Blackheart injury is a debilitating factor effected by both rootstock and apple cultivar. Blackheart, a form of winter injury kills and plugs xylem tissue. This physiological problem is so named due to the resulting oxidative brown or black discoloration of the xylem.
(Coryneum blight also know as Shothole disease is caused by the fungus Stigmina carpophilum (= Coryneum beijerinckii). This stone fruit disease affects mainly peaches, apricots, and, to a lesser degree, sweet cherry. Both leaves and fruit may be attacked; severe leaf infections with extensive shot holing may weaken a tree, while infections on the fruit produce the most apparent damage and economic loss.
The Grape Leafhopper and its control
The white flecking seen on grape leaves is the result of the grape leafhopper puncturing the cells on the underside of the leaves and sucking out the sap.
- Peach Cytospora
Cytospora leucostoma is a serious problem of all stone fruit (peach, apricot, plum, nectarine, almond, and cherry) in Western Colorado. Specifics on identification, control and curative methods are provided.
- Peach Mosaic Virus in
A quarantine was enacted in 1946 by the Colorado Commissioner of Agriculture prohibiting the importation and planting of nectarines and white-flesh, clingstone, and Rochester peaches in Mesa, Montrose and Delta counties. Known as Quarantine Order "G", this legislation has been updated several times to protect Western Colorado's peach industry from Peach Mosaic Virus (PMV).
- Peach and Nectarine
Varieties & Peach Mosaic Virus
This page lists nectarines and white-flesh peach cultivars approved for planting in Mesa County.
Peachtree borer (crown borer), Synanthedon exitosia, is a pest of peach, cherry, plum, prune, almond, and apricot.
- Technical bulletin on the use of Steinernema carpocapsae to manage peachtree borer infestations of peach and other stone fruit trees.
- Rusty Spot of
Peach and Nectarine
`Rusty Spot' is a term used to describe the dark reddish or rusty-brown spots which develop on peach and nectarine fruit. When the discolored fuzz is wiped off, a web-like russeting of the fruit can be seen.
Cherry Fruit Fly
The Western Cherry Fly (Rhagoletes indiferens) is established in Western Colorado in both backyard and commercial cherry orchards. If left uncontrolled, the fly maggots infest a high percentage of the fruit.