Author Topic: Peaches not ripening properly  (Read 1082 times)

sunworshiper

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Peaches not ripening properly
« on: May 23, 2019, 08:03:11 PM »
About half the fruit on my peach tree grew to normal size and ripened properly. But there are also a bunch that are about the size of a grape and not growing at all. They aren't maturing small, just sitting there hard and green. The tree wasn't overloaded - only ripened about 12 normal fruit. And probably around 15 of these weird tiny fruit. Anyone know what causes it? I don't see any obvious signs of insects or disease.

achetadomestica

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Re: Peaches not ripening properly
« Reply #1 on: May 23, 2019, 09:47:59 PM »
I have seen usually in the late Summer or early Fall the tree will flower
and the resulting fruit is small and usually drops off.  I have not seen it in
the Spring fruit? The trees are heavy feeders though so my guess would be
lack of energy via fertilizer? Did the tree flower more then once? It also
could be from lack of chill hours, but you probably get more then me in
Oveido
« Last Edit: May 23, 2019, 10:50:26 PM by achetadomestica »

brian

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Re: Peaches not ripening properly
« Reply #2 on: May 23, 2019, 09:48:18 PM »
You can grow peaches in Florida??  I figured it would be too warm all year.

Whenever I've seen fruit fail to mature it was always on citrus trees that were stressed.  My in-ground trees such as peach quickly drop any fruits that do not reach maturity.

achetadomestica

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Re: Peaches not ripening properly
« Reply #3 on: May 23, 2019, 10:59:00 PM »
You can grow peaches in Florida??  I figured it would be too warm all year.

Whenever I've seen fruit fail to mature it was always on citrus trees that were stressed.  My in-ground trees such as peach quickly drop any fruits that do not reach maturity.
UF has developed low chill peaches, apples, plums.
These trees require around 150 chill hours. One big issue is the chill hours are inconsistent.
It might be cold for a couple days but then it's back in the 70s or even 80s all Winter long.
With the lack of consistent chill it's amazing any of these trees fruit. I have a sunracer nectarine
that needs 250 hours and I bet we got less them 100 last Winter, yet it had sweet fruit this year

sunworshiper

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Re: Peaches not ripening properly
« Reply #4 on: May 24, 2019, 05:24:23 PM »
Thanks for the responses! Yes, I have one of the newer low chill varieties (planted around 9 years ago), i would need to go look back through my notes to find the exact variety but 150 chill hours is about what it needs. Great flavor and I consistently get enough chill hours for it to fruit. There was only one flower flush in Feb. what is so puzzling is that the fruit that developed properly and the ones that didn't all set at the same time. Lack of nutrients might be possible - I fertilize it heavily because the soil is poor here. If that is the issue would you expect the foliage to show deficiencies? That is not the case - nice bright foliage that is growing vigorously. I've seen off season blooms in the fall a couple times and those fruit never mature. I generally cull them proactively so they don't stress the tree. But I wonder if this year because the weather got hot faster than usual if it made some of the fruit act like off season fruit? Overall while you can grow peaches here can't say I recommend it. Disease and pest vectors are too high. Most years I've got only a couple fruit - insects and raccoons get them all. And it is a high maintenance tree. They are known to be short lived here. Is this perhaps an aging tree problem? The best crops this tree produced were when it was about 4 years old (hundreds of fruit that year).

achetadomestica

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Re: Peaches not ripening properly
« Reply #5 on: May 24, 2019, 05:41:56 PM »
I think you are right if the tree didn't have enough nutrients it would
show up on the leaves. Probably more to do with the erratic chill hours.
When do we ever have 150 consistent chill hours?
I also have come to a similar conclusion as far as growing peaches.
I am replacing a few peach trees and going with a smaller number in my tree
collection.

sunworshiper

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Re: Peaches not ripening properly
« Reply #6 on: May 24, 2019, 08:22:24 PM »
So do chill hours impact the ability for fruit that sets to mature? I had previously thought that chill hours only impacted whether or not the tree would bloom.

sunworshiper

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Re: Peaches not ripening properly
« Reply #7 on: May 24, 2019, 08:31:31 PM »
Nice tip! Googling a bit I found https://www.cultivatetoplate.com/what-are-chilling-hours-and-why-are-they-important/
Apparently "buttoning" - those tiny fruit happens when there are insufficient chill hours! I would never have guessed that! Now I know there's nothing I can do about it - it's a weather dependency.

I suspect within the next couple years that spot in my yard will be turned over to another lychee tree - my number of chill hours is perfect for those:)

 

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