UCCE Master Gardeners of Orange County
University of California
UCCE Master Gardeners of Orange County

Edible Plants

Apricots, year-round care

Apricots in the backyard garden need some care all year round.
Listed below are activities for each season.

Winter Dormant Season

-  Spray trees with dormant oil to control San Jose scale, aphid eggs, mite eggs, and peach twig borer.
-  Do not use sulfur on apricots, ever.

Spring Bloom Season

-  Spray to control brown rot and shot hole fungus as blooms start to open. Sprays may be required at 10–14 day intervals if weather is rainy.

-  Drip irrigate daily or sprinkler irrigate every 2–3 weeks.
-  Fertilize before 1st irrigation with 1–2 lb. of urea. Water in.
-  Thin fruits to about 4–6" apart when 1/2–5/8" diameter.
-  Paint trunks with 50/50 mix of white interior latex paint and water to prevent sunburn and borer infestation.

Summer Growing Season

-  Continue same irrigation schedule as in spring.
-  Fertilize young trees monthly at ¼ spring rates to encourage vigorous growth.

Fall Harvest Season

-  Prune trees before onset of winter rains to prevent Eutypa fungus infection of pruning wounds.
-  Remove about 20% last year’s growth to let light into tree.
-  Remove old, broken, diseased branches.
-  Spray trees during or after leaf fall but before onset of winter rains to control shot hole fungus.
-  Do not use sulfur on apricots, use fixed copper.


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