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Critical Winter Care For Your Peaches

Galaxy white peach is a also a flat peach variety. Many report that is needs 500 - 600 hours of chilling so it is not officially on this list. However, I have one growing and fruiting in Northern Sand Diego

Galaxy white peach: yum


A great contributing reader, Sateesh Lele, has just reminded me of an important issue.

If you are living in a warmer climate, your deciduous fruit trees are likely on the verge of breaking dormancy… or in the process of leafing out now.

Therefore, this is a critical time of year to do two important things for your peaches (and all your deciduous fruit trees for that matter).  These simple moves now will set you up for success later.


Tropic Snow Peach flowers

Tropic Snow Peach flowers

1. Prune:

Cut out dead branches, crossing branches, etc.  For more info and pictures, see my simple but complete article on pruning via this link.

What branches to prune

Branches to prune. (Osborne guide to pruning).

2. Spray for Peach Leaf Curl: 

This is a critically important thing to do for the health of your peach tree.

The key is to spray the buds and all the branches before the buds open up. If you wait to spray for leaf curl after the buds break open it will likely be too late and the fungus will have already infected the leaves. The fruit can be negatively impacted too.

I happen to use this brand of horticultural copper fungal spray but there are several other options.  Many people (including me) will add in horticulture oil in the same spraying to kill overwintering parasitic insect eggs etc.  For more info about this topic, check out my complete article on Peach Leaf Curl treatment.

Peach leaf curl: Yuck

Peach leaf curl: Yuck

Hints: Before you spray

  • Pull off all the remaining leaves that haven’t fallen off the tree on their own.  There is no point in wasting spray on them.  On the same note, spray your tree after after you prune… again there is no point in spraying branches you will be cutting off.
Small wrinkled shriveled peach fruit

Peach Fruit and leaves damaged by fungus


About Thomas Osborne, MD

Dr. Osborne is a Harvard trained Radiologist and Neuroradiologist who loves to share his insight about medicine and gardening.

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