How to Protect Fruit from Moth Infestations

Use these techniques to stop moths from ruining your fruit crop.

By Lisa Thomas from Reader's Digest Garden Basics: Fruit & Vegetable Gardening

It is important to do all you can to protect your plants from pest infestations. In May and June, the codling moth lays its eggs on the leaves of young fruit of apple and pear trees. Its larvae – tiny caterpillars that tunnel into the fruit to eat the seeds – will leave your crop incurably worm-eaten.

Fruit© iStockphoto / ThinkstockKeep your fruit looking fresh and tasting great by keeping those annoying pests away!

Prevent a second infestation by tying a strip of greased corrugated cardboard around the trunk of each of your apple and pear trees. After feasting on your apples, the caterpillars will make their way down the trunk towards the ground where they will nestle in the cardboard, an ideal place for the larvae to turn into moths. In March or April, before the moths emerge from their chrysalises, remove the card and burn it. In this way, you will destroy the next generation of codling moths.

Another method of attracting and trapping codling moths is to hang sticky traps in the trees. These are available in various colors which attract different pests and some have a pheromone scent which makes them even more effective. These sticky traps attract the codling moths, which then get stuck and can be more easily disposed of.

Plus: Easy Ways to Add Fruit Into Your Day