As I illustrated previously in a weird cartoon, growing peaches from pits is easy and worthwhile. Germinating peach pits is easy – it just takes a little time.
This is the time of year to gather local peaches from Farmer’s Markets and roadside stands and start growing your own. Make sure they’re moderately local fruit, however, as varieties grown up north may not meet the chill requirements here in Florida. (Of course, you could try anyhow – let me know if you have luck!)
My peach trees are almost done with their first crop. The fruit was absolutely superb in flavor, and we harvested at least a dozen fruit off one of the two trees I planted out back. The other tree wasn’t as precocious in its fruiting as the other and is also holding its single fruit for longer. Perhaps one will be an earlier season bearer and the other will be a few weeks later. That’s how it seems at this point, since the one tree is picked out and the other hasn’t finished yet.
Very exciting, and a good testimony to the value of genetic diversity on a homestead.
Remember, these trees are still LESS than TWO YEAR OLD.
They’re almost 10′ tall at this point and have completely beaten the 6′ tall trees I planted three years ago from potted and grafted nursery stock.
Another interesting thing about these seed-grown peaches: the shape of the tree is naturally growing in a multi-trunked vase shape that’s quite easy to pick. I’m not going to prune them at all and we’ll see what happens.
Even if I lost both of the tree at this point due to nematodes, I’m only out a little bit of time… and we’ve already enjoyed a nice basket of peaches.
Other trees worth trying to grow in this fashion: plums, nectarines and cherries, if you can find any from low-chill trees. If any of my cherry trees manage to fruit, you know what I’m doing with the resulting pits.
Now go – find some peach pits to plant! Follow the stratification method in the comic linked above and you won’t be disappointed.