Genetic Dwarf Peaches and Nectarines

The genetic dwarf peaches and nectarines form dense bushes, with long leaves trailing in tiers from the branches. In spring the branches are entirely hidden by flowers that are usually semidouble and always very showy. In winter the bare plants are also visually interesting. The fruit is of normal size.

Most require moderate winter chilling (400-600 hours below 45° F) for good bloom. None are blossom hardy in really cold places, but they can be grown in containers and protected until the warm season. If you try this method in the coldest northern regions, you may have to pollinate the flowers yourself with a pencil eraser, touching it first to pollen, then to the stigma of a different flower.

The plants can be kept in containers until about 5 feet tall, but in the ground they will eventually reach 6 to

8 feet and spread 6 to 9 feet. They can be used as ornamentals and require minimal pruning. Their fruit flavor and texture are not as good as those of standard-sized varieties, so they are not used commercially. The fruit must be thinned, and the trees need normal spraying for all the peach diseases and pests. These dwarfs are more susceptible to mites than normal-sized peach trees.

These dwarf plants were created by breeding numerous varieties, but they all probably share the common heritage of the 'Swataw' peach or the 'Flory' peach, both Chinese genetic dwarf varieties.

Genetic Dwarf Peaches

  • Bonanza' A medium-sized, yellow-flashed freestone with a red blush, this was the original genetic dwarf peach developed for the home gardener from earlier dwarfs like 'Flory'. It has a moderate-chill requirement (about 500 hours below 45° F), and the fruit ripens in mid-June in California. Good for the West and South. Origin: California.
  • Compact Redhaven' This tree is larger than other dwarfs (up to 10 feet), and its leaves and growth habit resemble those of standard trees more than genetic dwarfs. The fruit resemble 'Redhaven' in size, quality, and color but are borne on a more compact tree. It tolerates cold better than other genetic dwarfs. Good for all zones, especially the North, Midwest, and East. Origin; Washington.
  • Empress' This medium-sized, yellow-fleshed clingstone with glowing pink skin has a sweet flavor and juicy texture. It has a moderate-chill requirement (500-600 hours below 45° F) and ripens in early August in California. Good for the West and South. Origin: California. 'Garden Gold' This is a large, yellow-fleshed freestone with red skin and cavity. A moderate-chill variety (500-600 hours below 45° F) with show)' flowers, the fruit ripens in mid-August in California. Good for the West and South. Origin: California.
  • Garden Sun' This large, yellow-fleshed freestone has red skin and cavity. A moderate-chill variety (500-600 hours below 45° F), the fruit ripens in early August in California. Good for the West and South. Origin: California. 'Honey Babe' A large, firm, orange-fleshed freestone with red skin, this fruit rates high for flavor and sweetness. It is a moderate-chill variety (500-600 hours below 45° F), ripening before 'Redhaven'— mid-June in California. Good for the West and South and worth trying in the East with protection. Origin: California. 'Southern Flame' A large, yellow freestone with red skin and cavity, this is a good eating fruit that ripens in late July in California. It has low-chill requirements (about 400 hours below 45° F). Good for the West and South. Origin: California.
  • Southern Rose' This is a large, firm, yellow-fleshed freestone with red blush. Rated as a low-chill (300-400 hours below 45° F) variety, the fruit ripens in early August in California. Good for low-chill areas of the West and South. Origin: California. 'Southern Sweet' This medium-sized, yellow-fleshed freestone has a red blush and good flavor. This moderate-chill variety (500-600 hours below 45° F) matures in mid-June in California, ahead of 'Redhaven'. Origin: California. 'Sunburst' A large, firm, yellow-fleshed clingstone with a red blush, the fruit is juicy with a red cavity, has good flavor, and ripens in mid-July. It is a high-chill variety (900 hours below 45° F) suggested for warm areas of the East and South and colder areas of the West. Origin: California.

Genetic Dwarf Nectarines

  • Garden Beauty' This yellow-fleshed clingstone with red skin has a low-chill requirement (about 400 hours below 45° F). It has large double flowers and ripens in late August in California. Good for the South and West. Origin: California.
  • Garden Delight' A yellow-fleshed freestone, this has a low-chill requirement and red skin. The fruit ripens in mid-August in California. Good for the South and West. Origin: California.
  • Garden King' This yellow-fleshed clingstone with red skin has a low-chill requirement and ripens in mid-August in California. Good for the South and West. Origin: California.
  • Golden Prolific' This large, yellow-fleshed freestone with orange skin and a red center has a high-chill requirement (900 hours below 45° F). The fruit ripens in late August. Good only for high-chill areas in the West but worth trying in the East and North if given winter protection. Origin: California.
  • Nectarina' A medium-sized, yellow-fleshed freestone with a red blush and cavity, the fruit of this low-chill variety (300-400 hours below 45° F) ripens in mid-July. Good for the South and West, Origin: California.
  • Southern Belle' This is a large, yellow-fleshed freestone with red blush. The fruit of this low-chill variety (300-400 hours below 45° F) ripens in early August in California. Good for the South and West. Origin: California. 'Sunbonnet' This is a large, firm, yellow-fleshed clingstone with a red blush. The fruit of this moderate-chill variety (about 500 hours below 45° F) ripens in mid-July in California. Origin: California.

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Responses

  • jesse canchola
    How good are genetic dwarf peaches?
    4 days ago

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