Defending deciduous fruit orchards

1 Sep 2021

A guide to help NSW’s fruit growers protect the state’s $700 million dollar fruit crops from pests and diseases is now available.

NSW Department of Primary Industries (DPI) Temperate Fruits Development Officer, Kevin Dodds said one of DPI's most popular annual guides, the Orchard plant protection guide for deciduous fruits in NSW gives growers up-to-date information to protect their orchards from pests and diseases and maximise the production of quality fruit for market.

“Persimmon pests and diseases were first included in the guide in 2020-21 and we are pleased to advise that this important NSW crop now has an ongoing place in the guide,” he said.

“Persimmons are growing in popularity with Australian consumers particularly in the major centres, due to its sweetness and high fibre content. In addition, the persimmon represents a promising export opportunity in South-East Asian markets where the fruit is well known and loved.

“It’s an exciting time for the Persimmon industry in Australia which is experiencing consumption and industry growth.

“Apples have been grown in Batlow since about 1900. The 2019-20 bushfire season was the worst on record, with Batlow and Bilpin severely affected by extensive damage to orchards and infrastructure.

“A section in the guide covers Bushfires in apple orchards: observations from the 2019-20 season, which will help growers identify what they can do to recover and prepare for and respond to future fires.”

Mr Dodds said biosecurity is an important part of orchard management and the incursions of the exotic pests Khapra beetle (Trogoderma granarium) and Fall armyworm (Spodoptera frugiperda) in Australia, we highlight the need for growers to be vigilant when it comes to new pest and disease risks.

“A feature article in the guide describes some of the key exotic pests and diseases of concern for the temperate fruits industry and includes the best way that orchardists can manage the risk of an incursion,” he said.

Lists of the chemical tools, including herbicides available to growers have been updated to ensure growers have access to the latest information to help them effectively manage pests and diseases.

The guide is available free to commercial fruit growers and is distributed through rural retailers and key industry bodies in pome and stone fruit growing regions.

A copy of the guide can be downloaded from the NSW DPI website

Media contact: 02 6391 3686