Two years ago our apricot tree had an amazing crop. Beautiful, perfect, huge, delicious looking apricots dripped from each and every branch. Some branches were so loaded with jumbo sized fruit, that they touched the ground. I was so excited! I had big plans to eat apricots until I was sick, take bowls full to our friends, and then pick boxes of unblemished gems to sell down at the local fruit stand. It was a dream seriously.
Then something awful happened. Just as the sweet smelling fruit ripened to perfection, the earwigs came. It seemed like overnight and the entire tree was overtaken. Every apricot we picked looked wonderful on the outside, but once it was torn open, earwigs poured out into our hands leaving squishy, half eaten apricots. I wanted to cry. The kids would pick apricot after apricot and 9 times out of 10 they were infested.
We enjoyed only a handful of apricots that year, and since that day I have declared war on the earwigs!
The following spring I read and researched everything I could find until I came up with the best plan. And guess what? That plan worked like a charm. The last two years we have had not one earwig inside our precious apricots. So naturally I would want to share it with you! I am so thrilled that we conquered our earwigs, that I want to conquer everyone else’s too!
You only need two things:
- Something to wrap your tree with. They make special tree tape that you can check out right here. I am sure it makes it easier and prettier, but my method is cheaper…. and uglier. I use quilt batting and suran wrap. Yes, I am going all hillbilly here and my tree looks like it’s wrapped in a blanket, but I already had this stuff on hand and it worked just fine. Scroll down for the picture.
- Tanglefoot. This stuff is incredible! It’s a sticky substance, reminds me of really thick honey, that you paint on the trunk of the tree. Every insect that tries to cross it on it’s way up to your delicious smelling fruit, is trapped and can’t escape. It’s certified organic, its cheap, and you only have to apply it once a year.
Once you have your wrap and your Tanglefoot, it is really simple to apply.
- Wrap the quilt batting around the trunk of the tree. It will cling to it pretty well. Make sure you don’t leave any gaps or you will miss a few crawling bugs.
- Grab a partner to help you wrap the suran wrap around the tree on top of the quilt batting. One person hold the end in place, while the other wraps it around. I made it pretty tight and wrapped around the tree two or three times, so no earwigs would sneak underneath it.
- Use a paint stick, or anything else you can find, to spread the Tanglefoot around the tree, on top of the suran wrap. Keep in mind this stuff is STICKY. You do not want it all over your hands so find something long. It’s also nice to use something you can throw away when your done so you don’t have to worry about washing it.
- You can remove it after your tree is done fruiting or you can just leave it on there, it’s not going to hurt anything …. well except the bugs! Replacing it every year will make it more effective because it gets pretty covered, especially if you live in a windy area.
Here is what ours looks like after a season. We live in a very windy area so there is plenty of dirt and leaves, but it still did it’s job wonderfully!
I really can’t recommend Tanglefoot enough. I only used about $5 worth of it to protect two fully grown apricot trees so it is well worth the investment!
CLICK HERE to purchase Tanglefoot and protect your organic fruit trees from all those nasty creepy crawlies! (Affiliate link included)
Here’s to never having another climbing bug in your tree fruit again! Now for the flying bugs ……