Apple sawfly is as widespread as codling moth. However, the presence of apple sawfly can usually be tolerated and in years when there has been a heavy fruit set, a bit of fruit thinning caused by apple sawfly can be beneficial.
Some cultivars, such as ‘Worcester Pearmain’, ‘Charles Ross’, ‘James Grieve’ and ‘Ellison’s Orange’, seem to be particularly susceptible to apple sawfly. Apart from ‘Early Victoria’ and ‘Edward VII’, cooking apples are rarely affected.
Pick off damaged fruitlets when they are seen to prevent the larvae moving to other fruitlets or going into the soil to pupate.
- If damage has been heavy in previous years, a spray within seven days of petal fall with the contact pyrethroid insecticides lambda-cyhalothrin (e.g. Westland Resolva Pest Killer) or deltamethrin (e.g. Provanto Ultimate Fruit & Vegetable Bug Killer)may control the newly hatched larvae
- Label instructions for pesticides on maximum dose, number of applications and harvest interval must be followed for food crops
- Plants in flower should not be sprayed due to the danger to pollinating insects
- Inclusion of a pesticide product does not indicate a recommendation or endorsement by the RHS. It is a list of products currently available to the home gardener
Pesticides for gardeners (Adobe Acrobat pdf document outlining pesticides available to gardeners)