Growing Peaches and Nectarines – How to Grow Peaches

How to Grow Peaches and Nectarines – A Guide to Growing Peaches and Nectarines

How to Grow PeachesPeaches and Nectarines

Peaches and nectarines depend on a sheltered, south facing position free from frost pockets, otherwise, the early spring blossom might be damaged. A popular method is to train them against a south-facing wall which holds the day’s heat through the night, and if cold spring days appear a covering of horticultural fleece will protect the tender blossoms.

In cooler areas, an unheated greenhouse is an ideal solution. Since they need a period of dormancy, a heated greenhouse is unsuitable.

For gardeners with small or limited spaces, peaches and nectarines grow just as well in containers.

Recommended Varieties of Peaches & Nectarines

  • There are many varieties available as well as many sizes, including minarettes which are very suitable for containers on sunny patios.
  • For further information, read Carol Klein’s article on  Varieties of Peaches and Nectarines

Peaches & Nectarines Pests and Problems

  • Frost damage to blossoms in spring can be avoided with protective covers
  • Netting will protect the fruit from the birds and wasps in summer.
  • Peach leaf curl can be a primary disease affecting the trees. Read how to treat this in Carol Klein’s article .

Cultivating Peaches & Nectarines

  • Container grown trees can be planted at any time of the year, but avoid summer plantings when it will need a lot of watering until well established.
  • Bare-rooted trees are best planted in late autumn for roots to establish well.
  • Peaches and nectarines need to be grown against a warm, south facing wall, or in a sunny, sheltered site. Avoid frost pockets as the frost will damage the blossoms.
  • Both types prefer a well-drained, humus rich soil and will not thrive in thin, shallow soil. Yearly spring feedings greatly benefit plant vigour and harvest yields.
  • Depending on the variety, expect harvest between July to later August.

Harvesting, Eating and Storing

  • Ripe fruits are fully coloured and the flesh close to the stem is soft. Once ready, they stay pristine in a cool place only for several days. They can be picked slightly under-ripe and left to ripen in a fruit bowl, but they’ll lack the same juicy sweetness that tree ripened fruit possess.
  • The fruit do not ripen uniformly at the same time. Check fruit regularly and pick as they ripen.
  • Peaches and nectarines do not keep well in storage, so best eaten fresh or bottled for winter.

Carol Klein’s Articles on Growing Peaches

Growing Peaches & Nectarines by Carol Klein

Growing Peaches & Nectarines by Carol Klein

Introduction Peaches & Nectarines A ripe peach picked straight from the tree is one of the juiciest fruits that can be grown in the garden, rewarding the gardener with a drink as much as an edible feast. The closely related, smooth-skinned nectarine...
Pruning & Training Peaches & Nectarines by Carol Klein

Pruning & Training Peaches & Nectarines by Carol Klein

Pruning principles Peaches & Nectarines As with all stone fruits, peaches and nectarines should never been pruned when they are dormant (during winter) due to their susceptibility to canker and silver leaf. The trees should never be pruned when...
Cultivation - How to Care for Peaches & Nectarines by Carol Klein

Cultivation - How to Care for Peaches & Nectarines by Carol Klein

Peach leaf curl Peach leaf curl, Taphrina deformans, is one of the main problems when attempting to grow peaches and nectarines. This fungal disease also affects almonds and apricots. It is easily recognisable in early spring when the leaves become...
Varieties of Peaches & Nectarine by Carol Klein

Varieties of Peaches & Nectarine by Carol Klein

Harvesting Peaches & Nectarines Expect about 9 to 12kg (20 to 28lb) of fruit from a mature, healthy fan that hasn’t been affected by frosts or peach-leaf curl. A free-standing bush will produce as much as 20kg. Peaches and nectarines are best e...

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