Peach Tree

peachAny Peach Tree variety will make a wonderful addition to your garden or landscape that will provide years of productive harvests of sweet, delicious peaches the whole family can enjoy.  Here’s all you need to know to ensure the health and successful development of this awesome tree.

Location:

When choosing your location, select a site that has well-draining, sandy soil. Try to avoid planting in low-lying areas where frost may settle.

Planting Instructions:

  1. Choose a site where the ground is slightly elevated to ensure good air flow and ample sunlight.

  2. Till the soil in the planting area with a spade in a 5 foot circle.

  3. Dig a hole that is 12 inches deep.

  4. Add organic matter to the hole including compost and add some peat moss.

  5. Water the hole and around the planting area.

  6. Place your Peach Tree in the prepared hole, cover with the removed soil and gently pat down with the back of the spade to remove any air pockets.

  7. Inspect your tree daily and water as necessary to prevent any wilting.

Watering:

Peach trees require quite a bit of water.  For easier and scheduled application, water once weekly but make sure to water your tree thoroughly.  You can place a hose near the base of the tree and let it flow slowly for a few hours.  Do not water again until the surrounding soil has dried completely.

Peach_Tree_3_2013-06-30Fertilization:

Apply a nitrogen containing fertilizer such as 1 pound of 10-10-10 or its equivalent about 6 weeks after planting your Peach Tree.  In the following year, add 3/4 pound of the fertilizer in the spring and another 3/4 pound the following summer.  For an extra nitrogen boost, try seeding the lawn surrounding the tree with white clover or crimson clover.

Pruning:

Pruning is one of the most important factors in the health and successful development of your Peach Tree and its ability to bear the maximum amount of fruit.  Prune prior to the first bloom in spring.  When pruning, keep an open canopy to enable sunlight to reach all of the fruit.  Remove all dead, broken, or dying branches first, followed by branches that cross.

Pests:

Peach leaf curl is the nemesis of many a home gardener, however other fungal problems may exist, such as brown rot. Although many cultivars are resistant to peach leaf curl, your tree may still get this foliar disease, especially when it’s young. Often, as trees mature, they grow out of the disease. But the best offense is a good defense, so take steps now to minimize the problem.

Here is how to grow peaches that are disease-free: use a lime-sulfur spray, which is approved for organic growers. The timing of the spray is important — it needs to be applied at specific intervals in the tree’s budding out, so read the label on the product carefully.

Tips:

  • When picking peaches from your tree, make sure there is no green on the fruit for full ripeness.  Give peaches a slight twist to remove easily from the tree.

  • Store your peaches in a cool place to enjoy or use for cooking later.