Biting into fresh and juicy peaches is definitely a sweet treat!
Peaches are a delicious, healthy snack that you can eat on your own or you can add to pie, cobbler, or other baked goods. They’re rich in antioxidants like Vitamins A and C, potassium, and fiber.
But did you know that you can grow peaches in your backyard?
How To Grow A Peach Tree From A Pit
Although a lot of fruits can be grown through propagation, peaches can be grown from a pit. If you don’t mind waiting for a few years for the tree to bear fruit, growing a peach tree from a pit is a rewarding experience.
My next-door neighbor 3 years ago ate a peach and decided to bury the pit. Last year they had what seemed like a thousand peaches on and falling from that HUGE tree. It’s a beautiful tree and I found several seedlings under this past spring and I shared them with my friends and family and can’t wait for mine to begin producing.
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If you want to know how to grow a peach tree from a pit, here’s how!
1. Carefully Open A Peach Pit And Remove The Kernel
Using a hammer or a nutcracker, carefully open the peach pit. Although you can plant the entire pit without cracking it open, the seeds can germinate faster if the outer shell is removed.
2. Place The Pit Kernel In A Plastic Bag
After placing the peach pit kernel in a plastic bag, fill it with slightly moist fertile potting soil before sealing the bag. You can also wrap the seed pit with a damp paper towel.
3. Put The Plastic Bag In The Refrigerator
The temperature from your refrigerator can get the germination process going, this is also known as cold stratification.
Cold stratification is the process of subjecting seeds to both cold and moist conditions. Seeds of many trees, shrubs and perennials require these conditions before germination will ensue.Wikipedia
The temperature from the fridge can simulate winter, giving the pit kernel a better chance of germination.
4. Check The Seed After Two To Three Months
Once the pit has started growing roots of at least half an inch long, remove the germinated peach pit from the fridge.
5. Plant The Seedling In A Container
After planting the peach tree seedling in a small pot or container, keep it in a sunny spot.
For the next step, always provide enough water to the plant to keep the garden soil moist.
Planting A Peach Tree
Growing a peach tree directly from a pit may take at least three to four years for it to begin producing fruit.
The quicker solution? Plant a young new peach tree directly like a dwarf peach tree variant!
1. Choose A Type Of Tree That Grows In Your Climate
Peach trees grow best during hot summer seasons. However, different varieties of the peach plant require winter temperatures colder than 45 degrees Fahrenheit to grow effectively.
2. Plant During Early Spring Or Late Winter
Planting the peach tree in the late summer or early spring gives it the entire growing season to adjust to the environment before winter. It is also a good idea to start planting it after the last frost.
3. Place It In A Full Sun Location
For a peach tree to grow, full sunlight or a wind-shielded location is ideal. Make sure to plant the seed-grown fruit trees in an area with well-drained soil with a soil pH balance of between six and seven.
If the soil in the area has poor drainage, make sure to plant the peach tree in a raised garden bed or a fill the container with a sandy, fertile potting mix.
4. Make A Planting Hole And Drive The Tree Stake Into The Ground
Dig a hole a few inches deeper and twice as wide as the root ball of the tree. Drive the tree stake into the ground next to the hole, which is at least two feet deep. Create a small soil mound at the bottom of the deep hole.
5. Place The Tree Into The Hole
Spread the roots over the soil mound.
The top of the root crown should be at ground level and the graft union should rest at least two to three inches above the ground.
Fill the hole halfway with soil then gently mix it with the root.
6. Water The Soil And Fill The Hole
Soak the soil with water then wait until it drains. Check whether the depth of the trunk has changed then adjust if necessary.
Fill the rest of the hole with soil.
7. Spread Mulch Around The Root Zone
Add an organic mulch around the root zone at the base of the tree. Mulch can help seal in the moisture and will enrich the soil
8. Prune The Side Branches And Trim The Top
Make sure that the tree is only 30 inches tall to make sure that the tree will form a lot of fruits once the tree matures.
Attach the tree trunk to the stake with tree ties.
Proper Care For The Tree
To ensure the greatest chance of a bountiful harvest, here are some peach tree care tips:
Water The Tree
Give the tree at least two gallons of water weekly. This equals to one inch of rainfall.
Keep the soil evenly moist, but it should also not be soaking wet.
Most peach trees prefer to dry out before being watered so, watch for signs of over or under watering and adjust accordingly
Use A Slow Release Fertilizer
Fertilize during early spring with a slow release fertilizer. To get the best results, choose something low in nitrogen and high in phosphorus.
Apply a balanced 10-10-10 fertilizer around the peach tree. Start with one pound for every new tree then add one more pound each year.
Thin Out The Small Peaches
A month after the peach blooms, remove the small peaches and leave the larger ones with at least six to eight inches apart.
This will ensure that there’s increased fruit production. The remaining fruit receives additional nutrients.
Prevent Diseases And Control Pests
Peach trees can suffer from brown rot and peach leaf curl which can devastate your crop yield.
Rather than waiting for the pests to cause harm to your trees, apply pesticides and fungicides as your pest control for a better chance of growing and harvesting delicious peach.
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It may take a lot of time for you to start harvesting your own peaches from your own tree, but growing this delicious fruit in your backyard is truly rewarding.
After all, who doesn’t want to enjoy some fresh, juicy peaches anytime you want, right?