Fruit Bagging Experiment Results

by Daisy on 09/15/2016

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A while back, I decided to try bagging one of the three Asian pears my tree successfully produced this year. I wanted to see if it made any difference in pest damage prevention.

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Here are the results:

This is the unbagged pear:

asian-pear

There’s no internal damage, no worms burrowing, but I see some superficial damage, probably from an insect with sucking mouthparts, like a stink bug.

bagged-asian-pear

By comparison, the bagged fruit, pictured on the left, doesn’t have this damage.

bagged-pear-vs-unbagged-pear

Conclusion: I think this is a good technique, one that should be used on more vulnerable fruit, but is of negligible value for these Asian pears until the bugs well and truly find them. Since the pressure on them at this time seems relatively low, I probably won’t make the effort to bag them in the future until I see the insects start to be a problem.

I will definitely try this on any apples I get next year.

What do you think?

 



{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

Sallie September 16, 2016 at 6:57 am

Good study. Good conclusions. Thanks!!

Claudine September 16, 2016 at 11:00 am

I appreciate your experiment.
For my apples I used coddling moth traps, and haven’t had any problems. But my trees are young and might attract more pests as they produce more fruit.
Thanks!

Daisy September 16, 2016 at 12:20 pm

Sallie–Let’s hope for a “larger sample size” next year!

Kathy September 16, 2016 at 12:49 pm

I love this idea. And, your results were favorable. My only problem is I find it hard to trust plastic these days. I use glass instead of plastic containers for the most part. I wonder if you could use a muslin drawstring bag. It may not keep everything out, but wonder if it would deter some things. Maybe coat them in beeswax first. I’m just brainstorming…haven’t a clue really. The bees would probably divebomb them. LOL!

Daisy September 16, 2016 at 1:05 pm

Claudine–I’m going to look into those, thank you for the benefit of your experience.

Daisy September 17, 2016 at 5:45 pm

Kathy–Yes, that is an issue. The Japanese use a layered paper bag, and I think cloth is an option. With opaque bags, you’d need to remove it a bit before harvest to allow the light to change the fruit to its natural color (it would be blanched otherwise). Cloth might let in more light than paper. Some people slip on bits of nylon hose.

Kathy Davenport September 18, 2016 at 8:45 pm

Some good points there, Daisy!

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