Santa Fe Tree Farm
1749 San Ysidro Crossing
Santa Fe, NM 87507

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Meeting the Demands of Your Peach Tree in Five Efficient Ways

Love of food is often intermingled with the desire to cook food. Not much different can be said about fruits and the willingness to grow them organically, perhaps in your own backyard.

However, special measures are to be taken to care for them, ensuring the best fruits to be harvested. Peach, in particular, is a delight and here are five simple and efficient ways to nurture your own peach tree.

Peach trees thrive in the cold

Peaches are often associated with tropical weather but it actually grows in the cold. One of the core requirements for the peach tree is a cold climate. The tree tends to go into ‘dormancy’ and allows for the buds set in previous summer to blossom, eventually producing fruit.

Each variety has a different minimum number of hours, ranging from 50-1000, that they need to be exposed to temperatures under 45⁰F (7⁰C). A loss of 200 or more hours can ruin the tree, so make sure you assess the weather conditions of your area before ordering a peach tree for your backyard.

Pruning is a must

Pruning is the process of cutting away old branches to stimulate growth. Unlike your other garden ornamentals, Peach trees must be pruned annually in the dormant season, without taking a time off from the monotonous chore.

Pruning stimulates the production of the plant hormone ‘Cytokinin’ that is responsible for the lateral shoot growth. Additionally, it removes the useless old or diseased branches from sucking up the useful nutrients in the tree that could be utilized in the fruit producing branches.

Chopping away old withering branches along with those that no longer produce fruit, and reducing the branches up to half the number of branches from the previous year is the key to effective pruning.


Like any living species, the Peach tree requires a particular set of nutrients for it to grow into a healthy fruitful tree. Deficiency of these nutrients often results in your Peach tree’s fruit production falling short of your expectations. Fertilize the tree with a nitrogen-based fertilizer in the following pattern:

  • 1 pound, 6 weeks after plantation,
  • 4 pounds in the spring then again in the summer,
  • From the third year on, use 1 pound per year since the Peach tree doesn’t need excess nitrogen after maturation.

An agroecological approach to this provision of nitrogen is by planting White clover, grass or bird’s foot trefoil nearby, which fixes nitrogen from the environment and makes it readily available for the Peach tree.

Get rid of the weeds

It is a good practice to remove any weeds and grass within a 3-foot radius of the peach tree. Mulch can also be applied about 3 inches into the ground to retain moisture for the tree. IT keeps the weeds from growing and prevents them from feeding on the nutrients in the soil meant for your beloved tree.

Ending the harvest season

If the peaches still have green patches, they’re not ready to be picked. After harvesting the ripened fruit, clean out any fallen fruit and leaves near the tree to prevent diseases like peach scalp.

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