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Larry Sagers Horticultural Specialist Utah State University Extension Service Thanksgiving Point Office © All Rights Reserved
Eliminating Problem Fruit
While fruit is usually a tasty treat or a real landscape asset on some plants, it can have undesirable side effects. The problems are most serious when fruit comes on plants grown as ornamentals. No one like the mess from the fruit and the mess it makes when people walk through it and track it inside the home.
The most common problem are crabapples. These are even more serious when they grow around churches, schools and other areas and children bring them inside to make even more of a mess. The easiest solution is to treat the trees to cause the fruit to drop before they form.
Florel7 Growth Regulator can be used to eliminate undesirable fruit development on many ornamental trees and shrubs. These include apples, cottonwoods, crabapples, elms, flowering pears, horse chestnuts, maples, oaks, liquidambar, and sycamores.
Seeds of elms, cottonwood, maple and oaks can cause problems and they can be controlled by spraying with this product.
Florel7 Growth Regulator uses ethephon which breaks down into ethylene, a natural fruit ripening compound. This causes the fruit to drop prematurely. Sprays are usually applied at mid to full bloom stage. It contains no insecticides so it will not kill bees.
It works best at daytime temperatures of 60-95oF. It will shorten the bloom season of most trees by about two days. The timing must be followed precisely so read and follow all label directions.
Applications of Florel7 Growth Regulator must be made prior to fruit set. It must be applied at full bloom and sufficient water to wet the foliage but not to run off. The buds and blooms must be covered because incomplete coverage means incomplete fruit elimination.
Trees that are under stress from drought, high temperatures, or diseases should not be sprayed. Under ideal conditions you can expect 90 to 95 percent control. However, timing and application techniques are critical. This product is available to home gardeners in pint size containers and the packager is Monterey Lawn and Garden Products.