How to Grow Peach Fruit Trees
Ahhh, Peaches!! They are one of the sweet and juicy gems of late summer.
Fast growing peach trees, will reward you with golden peaches, in just a
few years. They are, however, highly susceptible to both insect infestations
and plant disease. To grow peaches successfully, you need to spray the trees
Did you Know? Peach pits are poisonous. We don't think you are going
to eat the hard pit. But, we thought you should know.
Propagation of Peach Trees:
Peach trees are grown from seed.... the "pit". It takes three or four
years to go from the seedling stage to a fruit-producing tree. Most people
don't want to wait that long. They turn to garden nurseries to purchase young
trees that can be transplanted to your garden. Trees at your local nursery
are a couple of years old. This small peach tree will still need to grow
another year or two to get the first crop of peaches.
You can also graft branches from a peach tree onto other fruit trees.
Planting Peach Trees:
Select a location in your yard that receives full sun. Dig a deep hole. Add
plenty of decomposed compost, if available. Mix thoroughly with regular garden
soil. If the tree you have bought is inside of a peat pot, leave it in the
container. It is helpful (but not required) to slit the container to allow
roots to more easily exit the container. While making the slits, be careful
not to cut the roots, as you can do more harm than good. If your tree is
in a burlap bag, remove the bag. Gently spread the roots in the hole you
Bury the plant up to where it was in the container. Soak the soil thoroughly.
Add more soil if needed.
How to Grow Peach Trees:
Once your new peach tree is planted, it should grow quickly. We recommend
staking the tree in its first year of life. Strong winds can bend the young
sapling, causing the trunk to grow at an angle. Really strong winds, might
even cause the tree to sway and damage roots.
Tip: Fruit tree fertilizer spikes are a great way to boost the growth
of your new peach tree. The spike slowly releases a fertilizer specifically
formulated for fruit trees.
The size and number of peaches is dependent upon a number of things.
As a rule of thumb, more peaches on a tree, results in smaller individual
fruit. Sometimes, mother nature pollinates a profusion of blooms. Sometimes
frost nips a portion of the blooms. However, in a good year, it is possible
that so many peaches are on the tree, that the size of the fruit is small.
Growers can compensate for this, by removing a few of the baby peaches very
early in the season. Should you do this? Probably not in your first
few years of growing, as you do not have the experience to judge if there
are too many peaches on the tree. But, we do recommend removing any peaches
that are damaged by insects, leaving good peaches to grow even bigger.
Each spring, before buds open, apply a dormant oil fruit tree spray. This
will kill a variety of insects.
Peach trees are highly susceptible to both insect infestations and disease.
Without regular spraying, peach trees tend to be short-lived. We highly
recommend a regular program of spraying for both insects and plant disease.
If you use insect and/or disease sprays, we recommend you follow the directions
on the label carefully. And by all means, wear protective clothing and a
mask when spraying.
More on Insects and Disease
Sometimes, birds will peck at the ripening fruit. Pest netting is an effective
Some animals, notable opossum, like peaches. See
Animal control suggestions
Harvest fruit before it turns completely ripe. Once it is picked, it will
soften and ripen quickly. The fruit will still be hard, making it easier
to handle and store. Store fruit in a cool, dry place, out of sunlight.
Pruning Peach Trees:
Like other plants, pruning established trees is healthy for them. It
results in a bigger crop. Prune peach trees annually in the early late
winter or early spring, before the new year's growth begins.
First, remove dead or unhealthy branches and limbs. Prune in areas where
growth is very bushy. This will increase sunlight and air penetration,
to help the overall health and growth of the tree. You can also
prune branches to maintain a shapely looking tree.
Recipes: May we suggest:
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