Brown rot fungal disease can adversely affect the health of peach trees and fruits. To reduce the need for spraying to control this disease, researchers in France tried changing some common cultural practices.
For three successive seasons, researchers reduced watering to between 27 and 38 percent of normal during the growing season. They also pruned trees to have more open canopies. They pruned out strongly growing branches in winter and spring to allow more light to penetrate to the branches. The trees with modified irrigation and pruning bore peaches that were somewhat smaller, but the fruits had significantly less brown rot compared to the control trees.
For more information on this research, go to: French National Institute for Agricultural Research.