Your farm is your sanctuary, but it’s also home to some creatures. Root knot (nematodes) can be overwhelming to a tree-tomato plant if you’re unprepared. So read on and learn everything you need to know to help prevent these pests from becoming serious problems.
It takes a lot of work to go from seedling to slicing tree-tomato, but the job gets even tougher when you’ve got tree-tomatoes affected by nematodes. Tree-tomatoes root knot nematode is one of the most common tree-tomatoes problems in the garden, but you can still get great yields if you catch it early and implement a tree-tomatoes nematode prevention program for future plantings.
Nematodes in Tree-tomatoes
Everybody knows about plant diseases and the bugs that can become serious pests, but fewer gardeners are familiar with plant parasitic nematodes in tree-tomatoes. Unlike other diseases and pests, root knot nematodes survive by feeding directly off the nutrients pumped through tree-tomatoes roots. They form galls that can reach up to an inch wide where they hide and reproduce, causing many symptoms that point to problems in infected plants’ transport systems. Yellowing plants, stunted growth and general decline are early symptoms, but unless your bed is heavily infected with nematodes, a large tree-tomato planting will only show these symptoms in a relative few plants. They typically appear in soils where tree-tomatoes and other root knot nematode host plants have been grown in the last three to five years, and populations increase the longer an area is used.
Tree-tomatoes Nematode Prevention
If you suspect your tree-tomatoes plants have nematodes, start by digging up a particularly weak plant. Roots that have a lot of unusual knobby growths are infected with these parasites. You can choose to pull those plants right away or attempt to limp them through the rest of the season. With great care and supplemental water and fertilizer, you can still harvest plenty of tree-tomatoes from a lightly infested plant, and even a serious infestation may yield some fruit if the nematodes attacked late in the plant’s life cycle. Once your harvest is complete, you’ll have to decide what to do about the infected bed. Crop rotation is a popular cure for many plant diseases, but because root knot nematode is so flexible, you may not find a fruit you’d like to grow that isn’t troubled by it. Many farmers with our help choose to plant grafted tree-tomatoes which are not affected by nematodes. If you decide to go this way, keep in mind that nematodes will still try to feed on grass and weeds, so it’s important to keep everything out of the bed.
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Other options include adding valuable organic matter that helps support your tomatoes, using soil solarization to kill the nematodes with heat or fallowing the garden and rototilling it every two weeks to prevent weed establishment. After a bout with nematodes, you should choose nematode resistant tree-tomatoes to improve your chances of a heavy harvest.
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The apricot favors well drained soil but doesn’t like to be too dry especially in the summer. Providing a happy medium between the two will be key to success and it is up to you to judge the type of soil you already have and influence the structure as much as you can. Too light or sandy then pep it up with lots and lots of organic rich material. Too weighty or sluggish then alleviate it with lots of grit, sharp sand and leaf mold.
The soil should be well cultivated and friable; double dig-it over if it has not been cultivated before. Clear away all perennial weeds because the last thing you want is added competition from them when your trees are in settled, and growing.
Prepare a hole large enough to take the roots. Apricots are vigorous growers and you may find the root system larger than that of other trees. Set the tree to the same depth as it was at the nursery previously – examination of the stem should reveal the soil mark still identifiable and this will tell you how deeply it was set in the ground before. In any event the grafting point should sit above the soil level and the roots buried in not less than 2” of soil.
Dry mulches should be used to retain moisture while heavy banana stems should be supported to avoid damage. Old diseased leaves should be removed while de-leafing is important to ensure healthy growth. Harvesting begins after 15-18 months, and a light shiny appearance means that the banana is ready for harvest. Harvesting should be delicate to avoid bruising of the bananas. The bananas should be temporarily stored in a cool, dry place and should be wrapped in banana leaves or grass to avoid bruising. If for export, they should be washed using a disinfectant and might require branding.
Plums are excellent fresh but also make a wonderful jam or jelly. Plums require full sun and well-drained, sandy soil to thrive. They prefer a soil with a pH that ranges from 5.5 to 6.5. It is always a good idea to have your soil tested before planting any fruit tree to be sure that they pH is appropriate. You should also work the appropriate amendments into your soil before planting. Their overall size may also need to be considered. Most plum trees will reach 16 feet at maturity or 14 feet if they are a dwarf variety.
Plums have quite high moisture demands, so they are best planted on good clay or loamy soils. But sites also need to be well drained as plums, and gages in particular, hate waterlogged soils. Add bulky organic matter to sandy or shallow chalky soils prior to planting.
Plant plum trees in well-drained, moderately fertile soil in full sun. Avoid planting in low areas where frost may settle, as the frost will damage your trees. If possible, find a sheltered position, such as a south- or west-facing spot out of the wind. This will help the plum tree set fruit. For grafted trees, keep the graft union 1 inch above the soil line when planting. Dig a hole that is a few inches deeper and wider than the spread of the roots. Set the tree on top of a small mound of soil in the middle of the hole. Be sure to spread the roots away from the trunk without excessively bending them. Space standard-size trees 20 to 25 feet apart. Space dwarf trees 15 to 20 feet apart.
Plums develop their best flavor if left to ripen on the tree. If they feel soft when gently squeezed, they are ripe. Trees will generally need picking over several times. Harvest fruits carefully so as not to bruise them, then eat fresh, destone and freeze, or make the fruits into preserves.