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Identifying peach tree flower buds

Posted by mark_roeder 4B IA (My Page) on
Sat, Mar 7, 09 at 19:13

My Reliance will be a 5th year tree. The trunk has a very bad case of canker. It has produced peaches for two consecutive years.

This winter we had two nights where the temp was at least -23 F, or lower. It was -23 at about 8 a.m. when I was driving to work per my car thermometer. South 20 miles from here it dropped to -41F at an official weather reporting station, but they must have been in the valley. Other places nearby were closer to -27 or -28F, so I am guessing we got down to -27F. This happened in January and the trees would have had a lot of opportunity to harden for witner before this event.

I ordered a third tree. My original thought was to remove the tree with canker and replace it in the same area with the new tree, figuring the canker tree will not fruit due to our extreme winter. But now I am not so sure because I was looking at my trees now that the snow is gone, and the buds appear to be healthy.

Can I determine whether the tree will produce flowers by the appearance of the buds at this early stage? If so, what am I to look for? I expect the new peach tree to arrive in late March. Could I set the tree in a bucket of water for a month or so while we look for flowers to bud? This would be easier if this were not the only Peach tree I have that has produced fruit.

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Identifying peach tree flower buds

Most likely the tree will leaf out normally, but some of the flower buds may just blacken and fall off (i think that is what happened to a bunch of mine last spring).

Could you pot up the new one you ordered and let the big one figure out if it wants to feed you juicy, yummy Iowa grown peaches :) You could always transplant later the, i read that peaches don't have many problems transplanting?

I had -26F up here in Jan... our coldest temp. Still have no idea what kind of damage i sustained, although i'm tempted to rip every last tree out if they don't produce!!! and go with container grown dwarfs that i can protect from the elements and always have SOME fruit every summer.

RE: Identifying peach tree flower buds

Don't set your new tree in a bucket of water for a month. It will be long dead before spring if you do. If you cann't plant it outside, plant it in a pot, wet it, and don't water again until the soil drys. Keep it in a cool place to delay leafing.

With those kind of temp you cann't expect fruit this yr. Just hope the tree survives. It takes very precise equipment to tell if the buds are dead. Don't think you can tell by looking.

The Fruitnut

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