Question About Red Flowering Peach Tree

alameda/zone 8February 19, 2008

I just bought 2 of these trees after admiring several near me. I killed an ornamental flowering peach a few years back, but think I overwatered it. These are lovely trees and I want to plant them where they will grow, and would like to get any advice on planting them, spraying them, if needed, and any other tips to get these lovely ornamental peach trees to thrive. I live in East Texas, 2 hours from Houston. Thank you!


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carolync1(z8/9 CA inland)

Flowering peach trees should respond to about the same care as fruiting peach trees. All must be planted in soil which will drain, but various rootstocks are adapted to either light, sandy soil or heavier soil. You may be able to find out from the nursery what the rootstock is. When in doubt about drainage, you can plant on a mound or in a raised bed.

These trees will need yearly pruning to maintain flowering wood. The Sunset Western Garden book has instruction for pruning ornamental peaches, and their national book probably does, too.

Here in the Central Valley of California, we are advised to spray most stone fruit trees with copper and dormant oil three times a year - at about Thankgiving, Christmas and Superbowl weekend. Dates may be different in your area. More spraying is necessary for certain stone fruits. Fungal diseases affecting peaches and nectarines include peach leaf curl, shot hole and brown rot. The more humid your area, the worse these problems are. There could also be some problems with bacterial diseases in humid areas.

I have had my eye on a flowering/fruiting variety called Red Baron which is said to have showy red blossoms and later fruit over a prolonged period. Fruit gets good reviews for flavor. I don't know if it is suited to your area.

Many of the newer varieties of fruiting peaches and nectarines have very showy blossoms. These have been shown to attract more pollinating insects than less showy blossoms.

    Bookmark   February 19, 2008 at 1:40AM
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greenwitch(Sz19 SoCal)

I grafted Saturn, another ornamental flowering and fruiting peach, onto my Red Baron. Red Baron is just opening now, Saturn has been blooming about a week or so - gorgeous. The branches are covered in huge, double pink blousy blooms. The fruit is supposed to be very good too. I think one whole tree of both Red Baron and Saturn would be a spring sight not to be missed.

    Bookmark   February 19, 2008 at 2:34PM
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Embothrium(USDA 8 Sunset 5 WA)

Yes: Same requirements and limitations as orchard peach trees.

Here is a link that might be useful: L.E. Cooke Co

    Bookmark   February 19, 2008 at 5:40PM
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alameda/zone 8

Dont know what rootstock the trees are on, bought them out of town at a nursery that is known for carrying good fruit trees. They said the trees had already been sprayed for the year, so I start next fall. We have post oak soil, its pretty decent, but I will be sure to plant them where they will drain well. The peppermint flowering peach was near some roses in full sun. I watered the tree everytime I watered the roses and guess that is what did it in. Roses looked great, peach tree bit the dust.

    Bookmark   February 19, 2008 at 8:20PM
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Embothrium(USDA 8 Sunset 5 WA)

Lots of pests and diseases afflict peach trees. Maybe in your area there is even a nematode problem. To find out here what might have happened to 'Peppermint' describe its behavior and demise.

Here is a link that might be useful: United States Patent: PP05147 - Peach tree

    Bookmark   February 19, 2008 at 9:00PM
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alameda/zone 8

This tree died 2 years ago, so my information might not be completely accurate. We planted in full sun in a large backyard. Good amended soil, no fertilizer. As I was always in the yard gardening, watering roses, other plants, this tree got alot of water - not soaked or waterlogged, but plenty. Kept sprinkler on in hot summer for grass. For a year or so, it lived, but didnt flourish and grow and expand. I thought it was just building roots for a surge later on. The year it just drifted away......The tree just never caught on. Didnt notice any insects or blight - but then, I really dont know what to look for on fruit trees. I did spray with dormant oil. The only thing I can think of is too much water. But maybe I didnt spread the roots out and they grew in a circle....and it slowly died. Just really not sure. But dont want to make the same mistake with these new trees!

    Bookmark   February 19, 2008 at 9:27PM
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Embothrium(USDA 8 Sunset 5 WA)

If you amended the planting hole backfill so that it was pretty different from the surrounding soil you may have created a situation where water collected around the tree and it was too wet. This can happen in a heavy soil, the amended planting hole acting as a sump under wet conditions.

When new plantings consist of bare-rooted stock or others that have lost most of the small, outer roots (balled in burlap or root-pruned at planting time, as when it is found the roots have been deformed by container culture) it is not unusual for the top growth to stall for one season only. New roots will come out of the cut root ends after the top growth starts the first spring after planting but no significant elongation of roots will occur until the first fall after planting. Normal top growth therefore does not resume until the second spring after planting.

Roots circle when encountering pot walls, trees and shrubs planted with circling roots do not continue to circle after planting. The old, firm sections that were in a circle when planted will retain that shape but new roots will grow away from the center of the plant. When a failed plant is dug up later and found to have most of the roots in a circle that is because it didn't make much new root growth after planting. The circling created by the container is what produces the dominant impression after the plant is pulled up because there isn't a bunch of new roots coming out from inside the old circling roots. If a plant is severely rootbound, with a fist or knot of roots near the base of the stem it may actually not be possible for very many new roots to break away from this configuration. I have examined more than a few shrubs with a turnip at the bottom of the trunk with only a few correctly oriented roots finding their way out here and there.

    Bookmark   February 19, 2008 at 10:03PM
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alameda/zone 8

I really cant remember if I amended the soil around that tree or not......chances are, I might have. But have since learned that is not a good thing to do. These new trees are of a good size, healthy and potted in large black plastic nursery pots. We plan to dig good sized holes that will easily hold the plant then carefully ease it into the hole and loosen the soil with our hands, put in a bit of soil from the hole, and water the plant to get out air bubbles. Then when that is soaked in, fill in the rest of the soil and put some landscapers mulch on top. Should we put in any bone meal or other additive mixed in the hole? Sure want these trees to make it......

    Bookmark   February 19, 2008 at 11:41PM
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The peach trees in east Texas should be grafted onto nemagaurd rootstock. If your old tree that died was not on this stock it may have died from nematodes, something common in east Texas. If your new tree is from a nursery with a good rep. I'll bet that is the stock it is on.

It sure sounds like you have a good plan in place as far as planting. The only thing I may recommend is to make sure and keep the graft line above the soil line (if I need to elaborate let me know). I think your new tree will do great! I'll bet you will enjoy it for years to come.

Carolync1 I think the Red Barron is great. As far as I have seen I think it is one of the best combo fruiting-blooming peaches. Tried and true in C.Texas.

Greenwitch, I'll bet your double worked blooming peach must look like a fantasy book in bloom. Hey, I have heard of another blooming-fruiting peach called 4star daily news that I think has salmon colored flowers. I'll bet all three on a tree would really be something. Maybe I'll try that!

Good times guys,

    Bookmark   February 20, 2008 at 12:16AM
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