The saga of my fruit orchard continues, much to my dismay. I planted an assortment of fruit trees seven years ago in a fenced in area of the sheep pasture. Fruit trees take approximately three years to produce fruit, so after tending to the trees for two years, the next year I eagerly awaited my first crop of peaches, assorted apples, Asian pears, plums. Our son had decided we needed a couple of goats. They do clean up a yard of most wild vegetation, but we didn't know they liked bark of fruit trees! It was too late before we realized they had gotten into the orchard and chewed the bark from all the fruit trees. All eight trees; gone. We had heard if you spread melted beeswax on the bare tree it might help. We tried. It didn't. All we got was an exterior cabin wall into which the honeybees would build a new hive. We had left the unused beeswax on the porch and it must have attracted them.
Was there any hope of saving the trees? We tried a new concoction this year that I found on the internet. It is an organic treatment whose recipe consists of equal parts compost, wood ash, and diatomaceous earth, along with a bit of liquid seaweed, all mixed with enough water to form a paste. We mixed it all in a five gallon bucket, donned some rubber gloves and spread it over the injured areas. We also pruned way back, the most affected trees, leaving just a bare minimum on the pathetic Damson plum.