Peach Leaf Curl

Peach Leaf Curl
Note to selves: Spray the fruit trees properly next year!

Shame on us for not spraying the fruit trees properly this year. Here I am typing out blog post after blog post trying to sound like we are somewhat competent gardeners and this year, well, we are a great big gardening mess. First the damping off and now the peach leaf curl. What next?
Peach Leaf Curl
Peach Leaf Curl is another lovely fungal disease that when controlled with proper spraying stays at bay. But when you let it overwinter without spraying it will come and get you once spring hits and the leaf buds sprout. Once that happens, there is nothing you can do until the next dormant season. Since the disease places stress on the tree you can coddle your poor sickly tree by giving it extra fertilizer and proper water. Peach Leaf Curl affects namely peaches, nectarines and in the case of our yard, our Weeping Santa Rosa Plum tree. The leaves become discolored, curl up and much of the fruit also becomes damaged. I fear we won’t have half the nectarine crop or peach crop that we did last year.
Peach Leaf Curl
To keep peach leaf curl away, you should spray with a copper spray three times during the winter. I’ve been reading that most people can get rid of it with only one spraying, but we’ve been advised to spray three times. First when all of the leaves have fallen off, which often in Sonoma is around Thanksgiving. Then spray again a month later around Christmas and then give it one final spray at the end of January before the leave buds break.

This year we only sprayed in January and then it rained a day afterwards, so I’m sure that most of the copper was washed off anyway. We are paying for it now as all of our peach, nectarine and plum trees are deeply infected with it.

If you’d like to read more about peach leaf curl click over to UC Davis’s website. We get a lot of our in depth gardening info from them.


Filed under Fruit Trees, notes for next year

9 responses to “Peach Leaf Curl

  1. Em

    We get leaf curl in our stonefruit too, but we sprayed with lime sulphur before budburst last spring and it kept that out of the trees through summer (mind you they now have rust and shothole b/c it’s been a dry stressed summer, and I haven’t sprayed anything else). I’ve read that lime sulphur is recommended instead of copper sulphate, as the copper can build up in soil and kill beneficial soil bacteria.

  2. Same thing happened here! Bummer. At least it shouldn’t kill the tree.

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  5. lisa

    I’m not a gardener. I see a plant or tree I like, I buy it, I stick it in the ground, water it and hope for the best. My peach tree produce peaches the first season. Then it got this red bumpy curly stuff. I picked off the leaves and threw ’em on the ground. Whadda I know? Well, the tree seems healthy now and is producing tons of little peaches so far. Too late to spray now.

    But….if the peaches Look okay, and Taste okay, is it okay to eat them?

  6. Jim

    Hi, It is the 18 of may in Michigan and my peach trees are getting leaf curl is it to late to spray for it.

  7. Jim from Michigan

    Thanks for the help!!! The curl has somewhat stopped….for the most part the peaches look great!!!

  8. Jim

    It is almost July 1 . should I still be useing fungicide….been useing Captain

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