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Should I return my peach trees?

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Should I return my peach trees?

Post  lisaphoto on 3/18/2012, 10:46 am

So I have recently purchased 3 peach trees. After reading online how difficult it is to grow peaches organically, and all the diseases and pests they have, I am reconsidering. I know every plant has something, and most things aren't as big a deal as sometimes indicated. For example, I rarely spray anything on my garden plants. And all the landscaping in my yard, including trees, just take care of themselves. I really don't want to do much, if any, spraying. I don't mind the pruning involved, but I don't want to have to purchase anything to take care of the trees.

So my question for anyone with experience growing peach trees, should I return these trees and just buy peaches at the store this fall. Or do I have any chance of growing anything edible without using sprays or other expensive measures

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Re: Should I return my peach trees?

Post  RoOsTeR on 3/18/2012, 10:55 am

Lisa this is just my .02 for whatever that's worth Very Happy but I think any peach you grow yourself would be better than any peach you could buy in the store, even if you did have to apply something to the tree. I've had peach trees in the past and I never really had issues. I'm certain there are others here with more experience than me and they may have some advice on "healthier" more organic type solutions that you can apply if need be. I loved having our own fresh peaches and was never really bothered with a few worms/bugs or minor blemishes. The freshness, taste, and cost outweighed the minor inconveniences Very Happy

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Re: Should I return my peach trees?

Post  lisaphoto on 3/18/2012, 11:06 am

Rooster, what all have you had to do to your trees? Do you spray regularly, or just if there's a problem? It's not only a matter of organics, but also cost and labor.

I just don't know if everyone on the internet is over exaggerating the effort it takes b/c there is potential for diseases/pests, or if it really is a constant work. If I just let them do their thing, and just prune them once or twice a year, I am wondering what will really happen.

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Re: Should I return my peach trees?

Post  RoOsTeR on 3/18/2012, 11:18 am

I don't have the trees anymore. They are still at the house we moved from years ago. I did all the landscaping on that property, so I always look to see how it's matured every time we go by.
I'll admit, I was lazy and never added anything to the peach trees at all...
Weather seemed to have more of an impact on the peaches and production than anything else. Maybe I was just lucky?

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Re: Should I return my peach trees?

Post  camprn on 3/18/2012, 11:57 am

If you have one, contact the county extension agent or arborist and get the real skinny on growing orchard fruit. As a matter of course, I really cannot believe everything I read on the internet. The other thing that comes into play are the expectations of the person growing the fruit. If you expect easy peasy perfect table fruit everytime, well, there will be disappointment. I think growing fruit requires attention, good timing, bees and some treatments. Find out what the agent has to say and if you would, let us know what you decide. Good luck.

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Re: Should I return my peach trees?

Post  Unmutual on 3/18/2012, 12:06 pm

If they were my trees, I'd just stick them in the ground and see what they can do. I'm not sure about where you live, but down here fruit trees go for $15-$20, so it's not really much of an investment if the experiment fails. Just make sure you have the correct spacing and plant them in the best possible place. Dig that hole twice as wide as the root ball, put in some compost, and water those suckers well for the first year while they get established(unless rain is your friend...always better to use rain).

Fruit trees can be tricky. There are many factors that lead to no fruit: water/drought, heat, chill hour requirements fulfilled, insect stress, disease stress, etc. Though the healthier the environment you provide for your tree(ie: the closer you can get it to its native environment), the better it can stand up to insects and diseases. Also getting the cultivar that is best suited to your area will greatly improve your chances(just because it's sold locally, doesn't mean it will do well either).

I planted 7 fruit trees in my 40'x50' back yard this spring(4 citrus, 1 dwarf banana, 1 plum and 1 fig). I prefer not to have too many of the same species close to each other(though I'm not sure if peach is self fruiting or not, sometimes trees need a mate..kind of like blueberries). The 4 citrus trees are already trying to grow fruit(and the smell from them is wonderful!), but I know that citrus does well in my area, and I bought them from people who grow them for fruit production.

As always, your Ag Center/Extension personnel will have the answers for you. So +1 to what camprn said.

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Re: Should I return my peach trees?

Post  lisaphoto on 3/18/2012, 12:38 pm

Ughh, I called the extension office not too long ago about something, and I think I knew more than the guy I called did (which isn't very much). Two of the trees were only $20 each, and they look really good, so I may keep those as an "experiment" and return the original one I bought that doesn't look as good if I can. I lost the receipt, so if they don't let me return it, I'll see if I can exchange it for a different tree, or if nothing else, plop it in the ground here.

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Re: Should I return my peach trees?

Post  walshevak on 3/18/2012, 3:28 pm

Fruit trees grew and produced long before Monsanto and other chemical companys came along. The fruit may be wormey, mishapen and smaller, but it was edible and tasty. (cut the wormy part off). So I say go for it. But do watch cultivars. Some fruits just don't like certain temps. IE, apples don't like my hot weather.

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I only had one tree, but no problems

Post  morganfam7 on 3/18/2012, 3:36 pm

We only had one tree, but we had no problems whatsoever. I just realized that I didn't look to see what area...but to some extent it doesn't matter. It seems like they always say you can't live without chemical poisons wherever you live. I never sprayed my tree at all. I just fed the soil with composted manure whenever I thought about it which was maybe every year or every other year...was busy having little ones in those years. Anyways, we got the best peaches with no problems. Well, the trash man would come and pick our first ripe ones every year, Shocked but other than that... Besides I don't think they make a spray that I could use for him. Very Happy

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Re: Should I return my peach trees?

Post  lisaphoto on 3/18/2012, 6:31 pm

Thanks all. I don't mind if the peaches don't look great, as long as they taste great. I usually buy the "seconds" at the orchard anyways for freezing.

Next question, my trees are already pretty big and have some flowers and lots of buds. Do you think there is any chance at getting a fruit this year?

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Re: Should I return my peach trees?

Post  Unmutual on 3/18/2012, 9:44 pm

@lisaphoto wrote:Next question, my trees are already pretty big and have some flowers and lots of buds. Do you think there is any chance at getting a fruit this year?

Short answer: yes, there is a good chance of fruit since you have flowers.

Long Answer: Depends on how well it recovers from transplanting. Doing some research after this topic came up, it seems that all peaches are self fertile. Though it's not a peach tree, I did some serious root pruning on my grapefruit tree's roots and it still flowered and set(so far) 2 grapefruits. While I know I should cut the fruit and flowers off so the tree can turn all its energy to sending out new roots, for some reason I won't. If the tree starts to look bad, I might go ahead and chop off all the fruits and flowers though.

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Re: Should I return my peach trees?

Post  Roseinarosecity on 3/19/2012, 11:57 am

Dear Lisa,
I planted a peach tree/nectarine combo tree last year and this year it flowered beautifully and fruit started to form, but I was advice to trim the tree in spring and remove the fruit the first year so that the branches get stronger. It was the hardest thing to do this year. It's been a couple of weeks since I did this, and I can see I did the right thing. I am looking forward to next year's crop. I am following Dave Wilson Nursery Backyard Orchard culture method since I am in an urban area. It is not in my SFG. Good luck with your trees.

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Re: Should I return my peach trees?

Post  morganfam7 on 3/19/2012, 2:58 pm

@Roseinarosecity wrote:I am following Dave Wilson Nursery Backyard Orchard culture method since I am in an urban area.

Rose, thank you for mentioning Dave Wilson! I've been looking for information like that. We already have a Mollie's Delicious Apple. I just planted a Fuji Apple, and I'm about to plant a Georgia Belle white peach...looks like I'm going back for more peaches! Who would have thought to plant up to 4 trees that close together! Thanks again. Very Happy

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