Peach Tree has Leaf Curl
Hi there, It is beginning of November in Bay of Plenty, New Zealand and my Peach Tree is passed the bud stage and producing fruit. The fruit is still quite small. The leaves on the tree are all curling and bubbling and the tree looks like it is struggling. All info I have seen about spraying, says it has to be done before budding. How can I treat the tree at this stage. I don't mind losing this year's fruit to ensure the tree long term health. Can you please advise what I should do? Many thanks Renee Henry
Certified GKH Gardening Expert
You are correct, after bud break, leaf out and fruiting it is usually not possible to eradicate an advanced infection of peach leaf curl.
Since you are willing to attempt a radical control measure, and if the tree is not too big, you can pick all the affected leaves, cleanup and dispose of any leaf debris and old fruit from the ground, then adopt a preventive spray program with a fungicide for the emerging new leaves. At the end of this season clean up all leaf litter and fruit and use horticultural dormant oil with lime sulfur or copper fungicide during dormancy.
You can leave the fruit that's on the tree now and use a biological fungicide to suppress the disease. It's not a full cure, but it's organic program compatible and non toxic, so you can use whatever fruit develops this year.
I don't know which bio-fungicide products are available in NZ but these are examples: