Many gardeners already know that a red ball covered with glue can be used as a trap for the apple maggot fly (Rhagoletis pomonella), whose maggot, the apple worm, digs tunnels in the fruit and makes it nearly useable. In fact, you’ll find such traps in just about any garden center! But did you know that you can use a real apple instead?
Just coat a red apple (a ‘Red Delicious’, for example) with a non-drying glue (you can find Tangle-Trap, for example, in many garden centers) and then hang it in your apple tree when its own fruits are still very small. Attracted by the redness of the apple, the female apple maggot fly will leave the insignificant little green apples alone and land instead on the bright red one, convinced she’s hit the gold mine: a particularly juicy apple on which to lay her eggs. Unfortunately for her, she’ll end up stuck and unable to reproduce … and your apples will be in perfect condition come fall!
Usually one apple per dwarf apple tree is enough, but four or five may be needed on large trees.