Ask a Question
Notify Me On Question Update
Email this Question
How do I keep the little white worms out of my cherries?
Rate This FAQ
The western cherry fruit fly adult is a small true fly with dark bands on its wings. It over winters in soil under cherry trees and adults emerge the following spring from late May to early June in northern Utah. Once the fruits take on a salmon to rosy blush in color they become soft enough for female fruit flies to penetrate the skin to lay eggs. After the eggs develop under the skin, they hatch into white worms that feed on the flesh of fruits. You find these small, white worms when you take a bite or remove the cherry pit. Consuming fruit fly larvae is not harmful, but most Americans don’t prefer to have a little extra protein with their fruit. Here are some tips on how to keep the worms out of your cherries:
- Insecticides are the primary control for cherry fruit fly. Begin protecting fruit when it turns salmon to rose in color. It is most effective if all cherry trees in an area are treated to prevent flies from emigrating from infested sites. Let your neighbors know and encourage them to spray to help keep the fruit fly populations down. Effective insecticides for the homeowner include spinosad (Success or Entrust), permethrin, carbaryl (Sevin), methoxychlor, malathion, pyrethrum (Pyganic), endosulfan (Thiodan), and azadirachtin (Neem, Azatin).
- For helpful cultural control, place plastic landscape fabric or another barrier on the ground under the canopy of cherry trees to prevent larvae in dropped fruit from burrowing into the soil where they will pupate for the winter. Landscape fabric placed in the spring will also prevent adults from emerging from the soil. Keep the fabric in place year-round and prevent a buildup of soil and debris on top that would provide pupation sites for the fruit fly.
Submit Your Suggestion
Other Questions In This Topic
- I have a bartlett pear tree. A Limb is almost black, but growth was still coming out of the ends, so i didn't prune it off the tree all the way in the spring. Now other parts of the tree are turning black, some of the leaves are curling and turning black as well as some of the fruit. Can I save the tree, or do I need to pull it out. Also will this spread to my other two nearby peach and apple tree.
- What dwarf nectarine (or semi-dwarf) will grow well in SL County (on the East Bench)? Also, how much space will it need when fully mature?
- How do I know when it is time to pick my pear tree?
- Why is the timing of dormant spray important?
- When should I spray my apple trees?
- Apricots and peaches--what causes the reddish or purple-brown spots on new leaves, buds, shoots and fruit?
- Can you tell me the names of some good Apricot and peach trees to grow around here? Also, my space is limited so I just wanted to plant one of each kind of tree. Will they still be able to pollinate?
- What is the best way to tell when a d'Anjou pear is ready to harvest?