[NAFEX] Codling Moth Control (Richard Moyer's)

Karen Tillou arboretum at homeorchardsociety.org
Sat Apr 5 21:03:50 EDT 2008

patsy - i have a maybe 100 apple trees that i manage organically here  
in the pacific northwest.

the two uses for codling moth traps do not require different pheremone  
lures, it is merely a matter of the number of traps you put out, as  
you suspected.  i use just a few traps to monitor the emerging  
population each spring, but costs prevent me from buying two traps for  
each tree to trap them out....

there exists a product called "Last Call" that combines the codling  
moth pheremone with a synthetic pyrethrin pesticide - you apply 5-10  
"droplets" scattered on the branches of each tree (i think that was  
the recommended #) - the male moths home in on the pheremone, but die  
when they come in contact with the pesticide.  it is not OMRI listed,  
because of the pesticide, but is much less destructive to beneficial  
bugs than spraying.  if you have the time to apply the stuff, i think  
it might be a good solution for a small orchard.

my experience with CYD-X has been on the positive side, for a small  
orchard.  a group of us with small numbers of trees got together and  
split the cost of one bottle, which has a shelf life of 18 months if  
you freeze it between uses.  i have seen gradual reductions in my  
codling moth populations over the three years of use, and that is from  
a once or twice per year spray regime (terribly lazy, i know) with no  
other controls beyond religious removal of windfalls during the  
harvest period.
my neighbor and his 20-30 big old trees has also been happy with his  

one organic grower i know splurged on his $300 bottle of virus,  
sprayed it intensively every week during the first and second  
generation egg hatch periods, and so completely wiped out his  
population that he has not had to spray for the two years since.

the thing with CYD-X is timing: it has only a 3 day life out in the UV  
light, and must be injested by the larvae before they enter the  
apples.  which means the best time for them to do that is as they chew  
their way out of their egg cases.  WSU researchers Brunner and Hoyt  
came up with a phenology model for the codling moth, linking degree  
days to their egg hatching.  this model is available online, where you  
can plug in a local weather station's data and find out when the eggs  
are hatching, to better time your sprays.  i use the site www.pnwpest.org/wea/ 
   that has links to oregon, washington and idaho weather stations.   
(are there other sites out there for different parts of the country?)

i think part of my slow results from using the virus are from poor  
timing, as it is inevitably raining the days i need to spray....

hope this helps

oregon city, OR - zone 8a and wet

On Apr 5, 2008, at 10:21 AM, Patsy King wrote:

> Thanks for the good info and clear explanations and the lure site,  
> Richard!  (And Doug, I think it was your info on beneficial plants  
> that I commented on and was so interested in earlier, though I  
> mistakenly replied about that to Mark)  Thanks to all who have ideas  
> to share.
> I want to try to find the waxed boxes like you use, Richard.  I had  
> heard that it does work best if the actual corrugations are against  
> the tree, as you described.  But with the cardboard I have found, I  
> usually am not able to peel off the smooth part on one side.  Maybe  
> I can do better at scavenging through some of the cardboard  
> recycling bins in my area and find better stuff to use.  Using that  
> kind (with the corrugations exposed every time you untie them) would  
> be a great advantage in that you can use them the whole season as  
> you say, and eliminate my having to burn the ones I use since the  
> larvae are not visible in mine, just blocked areas.
> In a recent Codling hint that came on this site, somebody (sorry--it  
> is on a different digest so I can't view it now and don't know who  
> wrote it) mentioned codling pheremone traps for 2 different uses,   
> monitoring vs. trapping out the entire population if possible.  I'm  
> unclear if the writer meant that there are 2 different lures or  
> whether it was just using more traps if one tries to trap out all  
> the moths rather than just monitor them.  Apparently a new codling  
> trap is in the works but not yet approved for sale.  It is supposed  
> to be both a lure and a killer using pyrethrin.  I'm not sure how  
> much better that would be than the lures already out, which kill the  
> moths when they get stuck on them anyway.
> Some info that I got recently about Cyd-x virus, which is supposed  
> to be a good organic biological control of codling moth:  I was told  
> that it is only effective on orchards of I believe it was 5 acres or  
> larger in size.  I have not been told the reason for this and wonder  
> what anybody out there knows about Cyd-x virus (also called Codling  
> Granulosis virus, I believe).  I called a company in Medford Oregon  
> that has the virus for sale, but the smallest amount sold is a quart  
> container that costs $300.  So I decided not to give it a try for  
> that reason as well!  ( I have about 40 apple trees, but only 3 are  
> large, and about 10 in all are bearing so far.
> I recently ordered a rechargeable backpack sprayer made by Hudson  
> and wanted to mention it to the group.  I have only used it twice so  
> far, so I may find later that it has some problems, but so far, my  
> experience has been a resounding positive.  I spray copper and other  
> things to control scab and peach leaf curl, etc, and even with my  
> mostly young trees, in the past I found it tiring to be constantly  
> pumping to maintain pressure in my SOLO brand backpack sprayer.   
> This new Hudson rechargeable is a bit heavier because of the battery  
> weight, but that difference is negligible to me, compared to the  
> vastly easier and quicker job of spraying without having to pump at  
> all!!!  I LOVED the new sprayer.  It also seemed to have a longer  
> spray range than my SOLO brand one, though not 30 or 50 feet or  
> whatever may have been mentioned in the Hudson reviews or info  
> somewhere on the net.  The hudson doesn't seem to have volume marks  
> on the tank, so that's a disadvantage, but again, that disadvantage  
> is a small one compared to the ease of spraying.
> --patsy king
> Date: Fri, 4 Apr 2008 22:14:28 -0400
> From: "Richard Moyer" <ramoyer at gmail.com>
> Subject: [NAFEX] Codling moth control
> To: nafex at lists.ibiblio.org
> Message-ID:
>        <619330e60804041914lc0e3c06qcfb9ff35e02be293 at mail.gmail.com>
> Content-Type: text/plain; charset="iso-8859-1"
> Patsy,
> We've used molasses-vinegar traps, cardboard bands and coddling moth  
> lures
> in our home orchard of 10 bearing apple trees.  The lures (one  
> source is
> http://www.biconet.com/traps.html) will be more specific in what you  
> catch,
> though some beneficials still wander in.  Traps with lures are a  
> good way to
> ID the moths.  Molasses vinegar traps do bring in some beneficials and
> butterflies.  Check them the first morning you put them out and you  
> will see
> some moths if they are active.  Extension info can give you tips on  
> timing
> your traps.
> For the cardboard bands, we have used waxed cardboard boxes which  
> hold up
> for more than one year.   We cut them into strips about 6" wide,  
> peel the
> two layers apart and put the ridges toward the tree, tying them on  
> with
> twine or fastening the ends with velcro.  If your trees are larger  
> you can
> put one band around each major limb and the trunk above that.  Check
> the bands every 2 weeks in cooler weather, every 10 days in warmer.   
> Longer
> than that and some will hatch out into adult moths which lay many  
> eggs.  Our
> <.......snip...>
> Richard Moyer
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