Ask a Question
Notify Me On Question Update
Email this Question
How do I keep the little white worms out of my cherries?
Rate This FAQ
The western cherry fruit fly adult is a small true fly with dark bands on its wings. It over winters in soil under cherry trees and adults emerge the following spring from late May to early June in northern Utah. Once the fruits take on a salmon to rosy blush in color they become soft enough for female fruit flies to penetrate the skin to lay eggs. After the eggs develop under the skin, they hatch into white worms that feed on the flesh of fruits. You find these small, white worms when you take a bite or remove the cherry pit. Consuming fruit fly larvae is not harmful, but most Americans don’t prefer to have a little extra protein with their fruit. Here are some tips on how to keep the worms out of your cherries:
- Insecticides are the primary control for cherry fruit fly. Begin protecting fruit when it turns salmon to rose in color. It is most effective if all cherry trees in an area are treated to prevent flies from emigrating from infested sites. Let your neighbors know and encourage them to spray to help keep the fruit fly populations down. Effective insecticides for the homeowner include spinosad (Success or Entrust), permethrin, carbaryl (Sevin), methoxychlor, malathion, pyrethrum (Pyganic), endosulfan (Thiodan), and azadirachtin (Neem, Azatin).
- For helpful cultural control, place plastic landscape fabric or another barrier on the ground under the canopy of cherry trees to prevent larvae in dropped fruit from burrowing into the soil where they will pupate for the winter. Landscape fabric placed in the spring will also prevent adults from emerging from the soil. Keep the fabric in place year-round and prevent a buildup of soil and debris on top that would provide pupation sites for the fruit fly.
Submit Your Suggestion
Other Questions In This Topic
- My wife and I just planted an Autumn Blaze Maple at our home in Syracuse. Do you have any advice for caring for this particular tree? Both in the long term and short term?
- We have five acreas in Cedar City and would like to plant some nut trees. Can you suggest some types/varieties that would do well here? Would any work or only some?
- I live out in Magna and I was wondering if it's feasable and/or successful to attempt to grow a plum tree from a seed? When should I start?
- This is the same question I ask every year. What is the best time to pick golden delicious apples near the Hilcrest School area in Logan.? Two, what is the best way to store apples when all I have is a regrigerator in the garage? Thanks for responding to my questions.
- Our family has a huge peach orchard and this year we have been having the pit of the peach split in half when you open it and it looks like another "seed" is trying to grow in the middle of it. What is causing this and how do you fix it?
- Apricots and peaches--what causes the reddish or purple-brown spots on new leaves, buds, shoots and fruit?
- We have scrub oak in our back yard. Almost overnight we have thousands of little green worms that have made webs over the leaves of the trees and are eating every green leaf in sight! Help! What do we do???
- Do you have an email list I can subscribe to that informs me when to spray my fruit trees?