Questions about dwarf peach

fruitnewbienyc(7b)August 4, 2014


Trying to 2-3 plant dwarf peach (bare root) in containers next spring. The location I am thinking does not have a lot of direct sun light (Which one of the following cultivars would you recommend?
El Dorado peach / Lovell
Empress Dwarf Peach / Lovell
Pix Zee Dwarf Peach/Lovell

Also what size of container would you recommend? 10 or 15 gallon?

Many thanks in advances


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fruitnut Z7 4500ft SW TX


I won't get a genetic dwarf peach. Maybe the fruit is OK but I'm thinking regular peaches are likely better. You don't need a dwarf for a 10-15 gallon pot. I've fruited many stone fruit in that size. The small pot keeps the tree from getting too big. Mine have never exceeded 5ft with no pruning.

Here's picture of three normal size nectarines fruiting in a 12 gallon pot.

This is 4 nectarine in a 25 gallon pot. All fruited. They don't get much taller and if so are easily pruned. You'd be amazed how little time is spend pruning these type trees, minutes a year.

As to varieties you might check out the offerings at Adam's County Nursery. The advantage of normal varieties is there is probably a lot more information than on the genetic dwarfs. Redhaven would be a good place to start and build from there. Also consider bacterial spot resistance. ACN catalog has good info on spot and cold hardiness.

    Bookmark   August 4, 2014 at 7:39PM
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Scott F Smith(6B/7A MD)

I grew some of the genetic dwarfs and the fruit was OK but I would strongly agree with fruitnut: grow a regular peach. The genetic dwarf fruit quality is much worse. If it gets big you can always prune it back - you can make the tree exactly the size you want.


    Bookmark   August 4, 2014 at 8:36PM
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Thank you all for the advices.

Fruitnut, Your peach trees are awesome!
Can I mix different cultivars in the same pot or mix with nectarine? After checking ACN, I am thinking Sentry (early) Gloria (late) and Fantasia (nectarine) Are these ok choice?


This post was edited by FruitNewbieNYC on Tue, Aug 5, 14 at 23:12

    Bookmark   August 5, 2014 at 11:11PM
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alan haigh

For nectarines I would suggest an earlier variety which are less subject to cracking and easier to protect from brown rot, if only because of the shorter growing season. I like Eastern Glow, but it is not available from ACN this season. My rep there suggests Avalon as a sub. Nectarines are tougher to grow than peaches but so worth it.

There are advantages to peaches that have a long picking period. A good early mid-season that has about a 3-week season for our area is is Jonboy. In a pot, Redhaven would probably be about as good.

Gloria is a low-acid peach, as I recall and I'm not crazy about fruit without ample acid with that sugar. Make sure they don't tout Avalon as a low acid variety if you now what I'm talking about and agree.

Earnie's choice has the acid but a short picking window. It even wins taste tests on the west coast.

Madison has been a standard later peach in my nursery for a long time because of very good quality and a very long picking season as well as for its frost hardy buds, but in my own orchard I prefer the quality of Messina. I have so many different peaches that a long picking window is not really important to me.

Encore is my standard late and I'm in the process of evaluating best early peaches- I'm leaning towards Desiree after being dissatisfied with a couple of others when I needed to replace Harrow Diamond in this category.

In the end, there are so many great peaches that it is difficult to choose. New ones come out so quickly that I can't even begin to keep up with them all. If whatever you choose is known as a high quality peach I'm sure you will be more than happy with it.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2014 at 5:54AM
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Scott F Smith(6B/7A MD)

Alex while you could mix multiple peaches in the same pot its just not worth the hassle as a first-time peach grower. Also I would avoid nectarines since they have more problems. Since you are in NYC I expect all that concrete will reduce the amount of diseases/bugs you get but you will still have problems.


    Bookmark   August 6, 2014 at 7:46AM
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olpea(zone 6 KS)

"I'm leaning towards Desiree after being dissatisfied with a couple of others when I needed to replace Harrow Diamond in this category."


Are you saying you no longer plant Harrow Diamond? Do you not like it anymore as an early peach?

    Bookmark   August 6, 2014 at 9:01AM
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fruitnut Z7 4500ft SW TX


No issue mixing peach and nectarine either in one pot or separate. I mentioned multiple trees per pot mostly to dispel the notion that you need genetic dwarf trees in pots. You seem to accept the notion that you don't so that's a good start. That said one tree in a 12-15 gallon pot is a good way to start.

I like the sweet/tart fruit as well. But don't dismiss low acid nectarines. They are my best fruit, both white and yellow flesh. I don't know how they'd work in NYC but in my greenhouse they have plenty of flavor if not over watered.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2014 at 10:07AM
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alan haigh

Scott, I don't find early nectarines to be more difficult than peaches- you should try an Eastern Glow. A few more of the fruit may be deformed, but if you are willing to use synthetic intervention they are not all that difficult. I don't use more sprays on early nectarines and three is enough here- the third being only fungicide.

Olpea, I like to buy my trees not graft on rootstocks and no wholesaler carries Harrow Diamond that I work with. It is also not a very cooperative grower and does not long stay a compact and productive tree compared to other varieties. There is nothing wrong with the peach itself for an early variety though.

FN, it is probably wiser to start with a nectarine that has already proven itself in east coast conditions. Also, the low acid CA peaches I've tried all suck as grown outside, at least to my palate. Can't develop your high brix levels here. However, if Adams starts marketing any of the ones you recommend I'll have them send me one- they are marketing all the Zaiger types that they are confident can be reasonably productive here.

Did you read the article in Good Fruit about Candycots? Thought about you when I read that article because they expect all their varieties to start at about mid '20's. Maybe you should contact the breeders and beg for a couple of trees. Show them a photo of your set up and I bet they will be receptive.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2014 at 10:35AM
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fruitnut Z7 4500ft SW TX

Candycots sound interesting but doubt they'd send me or anyone else a tree. I'm not very good at begging for stuff.

I thought the article about "Predicting Fruit Quality" in same issue was interesting. Commercial growers may actually take an interest in growing good eating fruit...OK that might be a stretch. Anyway they stated there is a high correlation of consumer acceptance to fruit dry matter content, DMC. That is people like less watery fruit. That correlates strongly to high brix fruit. In apples they use DMC because that includes the high starch content at harvest.

They went on to say that fruit from over cropped apple trees have way lower DMC. Also said that good light exposure and "proper" irrigation increase DMC. Didn't say what proper irrigation amounts to.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2014 at 11:08AM
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Scott et al,

Did u ever try growing Eldorado in particular, or just some of the other genetic dwarves?

I have been eye-balling Eldorado as 1 of 3 peaches which I estimate may ripen as early as the Fourth of July here in Maryland-- the others being Springcrest and Flavorich (aka Rich May). This makes them very appealing to me.

I would like to grow Springcrest, but I can't seem to find a tree for sale anywhere, despite this reportedly being one of the most widely grown early peaches in the country (it was released by Victor Prince, USDA- Byron, Ga). I sampled these from a local orchard during the first week of July. They are yellow semi-freestones with good flavor. Sooner Plant Farm of Okla may be the only mail-order that is known to have carried it in recent years, but they're out of stock now.

I plan to order Flavorich/Rich-May from Vaughn's or Adams soon-- another well-known early yellow (semi-cling) reported to be Eastern-compatible & have good flavor too.

Is there anyone growing Eldorado in the Mid-Atlantic? Perhaps it could perform well here in the humid East? It is said to be freestone & flavorful when grown in Calif. Raintree is selling it out of the Pac Northwest. Would be interested in anyone's experiences with these varieties. Thanks for whatever insights you can provide.


    Bookmark   November 7, 2014 at 3:11PM
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