Peach Leaf Curl - Knowledgebase Question

Shingle Springs, CA
Question by madhouse2
April 17, 1999
I sprayed my trees this spring to prevent peach leaf curl, but my nectarine tree got it anyway and my peach tree has it too! Is there anything I can do? The leaves are just coming out now.


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Answer from NGA
April 17, 1999

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Peach Leaf Curl can affect leaves, flowers, tender shoots and even fruit. Those diseased leaves will fall off soon, but unaffected leaves will grow on normally. Once you see the problem it is too late to correct it for this season. Sanitary measures certainly can't hurt, so you may want to collect and discard fallen, affected leaves, and to prune twigs with the small, seldom noticed swellings caused by the infection.

Infection occurs in spring when temperatures are around 68 degrees and surface moisture is present on the buds.
Therefore the problem doesn't occur every year with the same severity.

The lowest toxicity option for effective control is to apply a copper fungicide at the beginning of dormancy in the fall.
Copper will cause the peach to defoliate so that is why we wait until the leaves begin to fall to apply it. Note that copper can stain masonry blue, so be careful in applying the spray if your tree is near a sidewalk, rock wall of your
home, etc.

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