In March of 2013 we planted five fruit trees at the house. Of those trees two were semi-dwarf peach trees, one was a majestic peach and the other a reliance peach. The first year we planted them they both had tons of little baby peaches, but we had to force ourselves to thin them down to just a few. That year we got one cute little peach that the bugs decided to share with us. Then last year we had lots of blossoms and we still thinned them, but the bugs and fungus were horrible and we got nothing.
This year we had a late frost. We tried covering our fruit trees with sheets, but they are about to get too big to effectively do that. Our majestic peach tree blooms early and did not fair too well because of the frost. However, the reliance peach tree blooms later and is a beautiful sight this year. Just look at all of those peaches!
|First Real Production of Our Young Semi-Dwarf Reliance Peach Tree|
We honestly did not expect on getting much for at least two or more years, but we were already learning a big lesson about the bugs and fungus the last two years. After much researching and soul searching we had come to terms with the fact it would be extremely difficult to grow peaches and apples here in North Carolina without some help from bug and anti-fungal sprays. Our climate is just the perfect blend of humid and warmth that makes it a nightmare to try to have organic fruit trees. This is disappointing for us, but we still wanted to try to be as responsible as possible while spraying.
In February before the trees began to bud, we applied an organic dormant oil spray to all of our fruit trees. Dormant oil is used to suffocate insects and eggs of pests in the fruit tree before they awaken from their winter sleep. Twice in April, we applied an all natural fungacide dormant oil spray. Dormant oil also effectively kills fungus and diseases that are trapped and growing in the bark, cracks and crevices of the tree. Then after the blossoms had been pollinated and the threat of killing the bees were gone, we sprayed for insects twice more with a non organic fruit tree spray.
How glorious to look out and see those reliance peaches ripening up in the tree! The peaches are a little small. The tree dropped many of the small young peaches early on and we also thinned quite a few. We probably should have thinned them out a little more. Peaches have a tendency to over produce. It is also still a young tree and we are learning too.
Reliance is also a free stone peach. Jon tried one of the peaches this morning. They are still just a little firm, but they are almost there.
Even with multiple applications of dormant oil for pests and fungus you can see we still have some insect and fungus issues. There are several peaches with a few small fungal spots on them that do not concern us too much. There are also some peaches with a clear ooze coming out of them. This is insects inside the fruit.
|Japanese Beetles are the Bane of Our Existence this Year with So Many Things!|
|The Fungus is Extreme on this Peach and there are Signs of Insects|
We can hardly wait for a couple more days for these beauties to be ready! How’s your fruit trees growing this year?