Where peaches are grown trained against a fence or wall, a rain shelter of plastic sheeting is very effective at preventing infection. It should cover the top of the tree and the front to within 30cm (1ft) of the ground, but with the ends open to allow access for pollinating insects. It should be erected after leaf fall in November and kept in place until mid-May. Keeping the emerging shoots dry in this way prevents infection and also gives useful frost protection. It is used successfully every year in the Wisley Model Fruit Garden.
A diagram of how to make the lean-to is available as a download below. Alternatively, you can purchase fruit tree protectors from Harrod Horticultural.
Prompt removal of infected leaves before the bloom of white spores appears will help reduce the amount of fungus carried over to the following year.
Some resistance is claimed for the peaches ‘Avalon Pride’, ‘Red Haven’, ‘Harken’, ‘Dixired’, ‘Redwing’, ‘Advance’, ‘Hylands’, ‘Robin Red Breast’ and ‘Rochester’.
Fungicides containing copper (Vitax Bordeaux Mixture*, Fruit and Vegetable Disease Control*) give good protection. Spray in autumn just before leaf fall and twice, two weeks apart, in late January and early February.
*NB: The following products are being withdrawn:
Vitax - Bordeaux Mixture
Bayer Garden - Fruit and Vegetable Disease Control
These products cannot be sold after the 30th November 2014 and remaining stocks must be used or disposed of before the 30th November 2015.
Fungicides for gardeners (Adobe Acrobat pdf document outlining fungicides available to gardeners)
Lean-to rain shelter diagram (Adobe Acrobat pdf document)