Peach tree eaten by ground squirels and birds - Knowledgebase Question

Redondo Beach, Ca
Avatar for rosemreese
Question by rosemreese
February 8, 2011
Hi I am new to the Antelope Valley, CA. I have a small peach tree and last year it was producing peaches. The fruit was not able to mature (got to be as big as a nut all green and hard)because the ground squirels would eat them. I found the pits on the ground. How do I keep the ground squirels and birds away and How do I give nutrients to the tree

Answer from NGA
February 8, 2011
Peach trees can set much more little fruits than it can possibly grow to maturity so it drops the fruit when it's still green and about the size of a walnut. So, it might be that critters are feeding on the fallen fruit rather than actually knocking it off the tree. With that in mind, there's no reason you cannot drape birdnetting over the canopy of your tree to keep birds and 4-legged critters from attacking the fruit. Just be sure to secure the netting around the trunk so nothing can get it. As for feeding, apply a 5-10-10 or similar all purpose fertilizer to your tree after it has finished blooming. Broadcast the recommended amount beneath the canopy of your tree (amounts as listed on the label, according to the size of your tree), scratch it into the soil, and water it in well. Good luck with this year's crop.

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