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No peaches for me this year....... AGAIN!!!

Gardening Reference » Gardening in 2006
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by beebiz on March 04, 2006 02:56 AM
I have a peach tree that I have had for almost 3 years now. Because of early warm temps followed by hard frosts, I have yet to eat my first peach from it. To say the least, I'm getting kind of ticked off!! [Mad] And, with all of these spring temps that we've been having here in West TN, I figured something like this was going to happen again! [Mad] [Mad]

But after seeing what I saw this morning, I am now even more afraid that a good heavy frost might just kill the whole tree. Take a look at the pics and let me know if you think it has a chance or not. Remember, I live in zone 6 and our last frost date is about April 15.

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And, here is a pic of what this kind of weather has done to my rose bush:

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I've always heard that a peach tree is very vulnerable to being killed by a hard frost/freeze if it is bloomed out heavily. Again, I'd like your input as to what you think my tree's chances are.

As always, thanks in advance for any help or suggestions that you might have.

Robert

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My New Web Site If you take a look, please sign my guest book so I'll know you've been there! Also, check out the new African Violet addition to my site! Thanks
by beebiz on March 04, 2006 03:03 AM
Oh, I forgot to mention that the low tonight here is predicted to be 28*. I know that is not cold enough to cause a "hard" freeze, but we've probably still got LOTS of cold weather between now and April 15!!

Thanks again,
Robert

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My New Web Site If you take a look, please sign my guest book so I'll know you've been there! Also, check out the new African Violet addition to my site! Thanks
by peppereater on March 04, 2006 03:11 AM
Hi there, Robert!
I have the same problem. Right now only one tree is blossomed out like yours. I'm afraid I won't get any fruit from that one...and the weather is prime for the others to bloom, too.
A sudden, hard frost may cause frost cracks on the bark...I had not heard that a freeze while the tree is in bloom could kill the tree, but then I've only been growing my own peaches for a few years. I would think the trees would survive. I've worked as a landscaper with specialization in tree surgery for 25 years, and never have seen a freeze kill a tree, although it can burn back the blooms and foliage, damage branch tips, etc. I have pruned fruit trees over the years And I've not seen a peach die from a freeze. I have seen freezes kill crepe myrtles and assorted other shrubs when we had high temps all through fall and a subzero arctic front came through suddenly...late December of '83.
I bet it's going to be a bad year for peaches, though. [tears] Last year I did not get any edible fruit.

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Dave
Even my growlights are getting restless!
by DeepCreekLake on March 04, 2006 04:25 AM
What cultivar peach is that? One of my white peaches stated on the label that the blooms are freeze resistent (its a white lady peach) but i planted it last fall too early to tell if theres any truth to that or not.
by weezie13 on March 04, 2006 06:14 AM
Okay, help me if anyone knows about this..

What do the growers do in Florida like when they have frosts, and a coming freeze??

Dont' they keep water on the tree or something..

And isn't it something about it's not the actual cold that kills it, it's when the sun comes up in the morning and magnafies the sun light thru it??

Okay, somebody's had to of heard [gabby] something on those lines.. [dunno]

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Weezie

Don't forget to be kind to strangers. For some who have
done this have entertained angels without realizing it.
- Bible - Hebrews 13:2

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http://photobucket.com/albums/y250/weezie13/
by peppereater on March 04, 2006 06:36 AM
Weezie, I think what you mean about the sunlight is sunscald. It's when the sap freezes, and then the sun warms the sap too quickly, bursting the bark.
It's possible to cover the tree with a sheet or other material if it's only the overnight low you're worried about. If temps stay low too long, this isn't much help. And in Florida, they do run some kind of sprinklers or something...as water freezes, it releases heat...that sounds funny, doesn't it! [nutz] It keeps the temp around 32, though. And they used to hang out "smudge pots."
Little pots with a wick and oil or kerosene, like a lantern. I don't know if they still do that. [dunno]
These may be issues I'll need to look into...Counting all my little tiny saplings and my handful of larger trees, as of this year I have 32 peach trees! [Frown]
Hmmmm. Maybe it's time for more research! [perplexed]

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Dave
Even my growlights are getting restless!
by weezie13 on March 04, 2006 06:39 AM
I am not sure I heard anything about the sap and it burning or scorching..

This was the process of the ice being on the flower, and when the sun came up, it's when it hurt the flower...

I do not even remember where I read it..

I am hopin' someone will come thru or find that info???
Darn Drain~Brain!!! [Frown] [Mad] [Razz]

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Weezie

Don't forget to be kind to strangers. For some who have
done this have entertained angels without realizing it.
- Bible - Hebrews 13:2

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http://photobucket.com/albums/y250/weezie13/
by beebiz on March 04, 2006 06:41 AM
Thanks Dave. I have never known of a tree dying from a hard freez/frost either. But, I had heard all my life that it was true. Like you, I've only seen it kill crepe's and the like. And as for it causing cracks in the bark, I know that is true. Mine has the scars to prove it!!

DCL, I don't know what cultivar this tree is. It was given to me 3 years ago and it had no tag. I was told that it came from Rural King and that it was a "Princess something" or a "something Princess." When I checked with RK, they had no more and were unable to tell me what the name would have been. As for the "freeze resistent" blooms, I have heard of such, but don't know anything about them. Good luck with yours.

Weezie, I don't know all of the ways that the FL producers protect their citrus crops. But, I do know that they use helicopters to keep the air moving (frost is not supposed to accumulate in windy conditions), smudge pots (for heat), and irrigation type spray systems to keep the blooms wet with liquid from before sunrise until the temps are above freezing.

I too have heard and read that it is not the freezing that kills the bloom. Instead, it is supposed to be something to do with the frost itself. I don't know if it magnifies the sun or not. But, I have had temps down to 20* on a cloudy, windy night and it did not hurt the blooms. A few days later, the temp got down to only 30*, but that night was clear and no wind. It knocked every bloom off the tree.

Thanks for everyone's input.

I'm going to try something that I read about on the internet. I'm going to load the tree down with Christmas lights (for heat) and cover it good with a bed sheet. I'll get up early and take the sheet off soon after the sun comes up. I'll let you all know if this works to keep the blooms or not.

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My New Web Site If you take a look, please sign my guest book so I'll know you've been there! Also, check out the new African Violet addition to my site! Thanks
by weezie13 on March 04, 2006 06:52 AM
[shocked] [shocked] [shocked] [shocked]
quote:
I'm going to try something that I read about on the internet. I'm going to load the tree down with Christmas lights (for heat) and cover it good with a bed sheet.
Where you just over at my mothers' listening to her and I?????
HUH????

Well, we were talking about someone having a coconut tree or something around here, and that's what they didddddddddddddddddddd.....
That is just toooooooooooo weird, not about an half an hour ago... [shocked]

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Weezie

Don't forget to be kind to strangers. For some who have
done this have entertained angels without realizing it.
- Bible - Hebrews 13:2

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http://photobucket.com/albums/y250/weezie13/
by peppereater on March 04, 2006 07:28 AM
That is a brilliant idea! Christmas lights!

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Dave
Even my growlights are getting restless!
by loz on March 04, 2006 08:24 AM
Very interesting topic...I have a peach tree that's 2 years old this year....it's just a baby, but grew great last summer! I'd never want to lose it because my dad gave it to me from his peach tree!
by beebiz on March 04, 2006 09:34 AM
Weezie said:
quote:
Where you just over at my mothers' listening to her and I?????
HUH????

Well, we were talking about someone having a coconut tree or something around here, and that's what they didddddddddddddddddddd.....
That is just toooooooooooo weird, not about an half an hour ago...
In addition to being a psychic and a clairvoyant, I travel through time and space during my out of body experiences. I tried my best to get your attention at your mom's house. I unrolled an entire roll of paper towels on the kitchen floor, but you all never noticed! [Big Grin] [Big Grin]

Only kidding!! If you talk to your mom later and find out that a roll of paper towels were mysteriously unrolled onto her kitchen floor, I'm heading for the hills and I won't ever speak to you again!! [scaredy]

Well, I thought you all might like to see my "peachy" Christmas tree (I just couldn't resist that). So I took some pics. Sorry for the lousey quality. I've had a lot of trouble with my hands shaking today, so the pics are blury. Again, sorry.

Here is the 8' peach tree with 80'/300 lites on it:
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Here it is after I wrapped it with cloth and tied it up with jute bailing twine:
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After I got it finished, my neighbor's friend was pulling into their gravel driveway when I heard them slam on their brakes and skid on the gravel. I looked over to see what was going on. There were 4 in the car and they were staring at and pointing to the tree. After a couple of minutes, they slowly drove on up to my neighbor's house. When they got out, they were still looking at the tree!! [Smile]

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My New Web Site If you take a look, please sign my guest book so I'll know you've been there! Also, check out the new African Violet addition to my site! Thanks
by loz on March 04, 2006 09:59 AM
[Big Grin] They probably think you've lost it! [Big Grin]

That's such a cool idea though!

My dad has a ridiculous tree...

What is that you ask?

It's a locust tree and he's let the middle branch grow way, way high....just that one branch...He insists that he's giving the neighborhodd a friendly sign.... [Big Grin] A hand sign if you get the drift. [nutz] [Big Grin] He's 75 years old and thinks it's the greatest thing in the world.

People look at it funny, but that's okay...

Let your neighbors stare, at least you are protecting your tree! [thumb]
by weezie13 on March 04, 2006 11:03 AM
quote:
If you talk to your mom later and find out that a roll of paper towels were mysteriously unrolled onto her kitchen floor, I'm heading for the hills and I won't ever speak to you again!!
Uhhhhhh, there wasn't any unrolled paper towel, but there was some chewed up kleenex...hehehehe [Wink] [Wink] [kissies]

Your tree looks fabulous...

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Weezie

Don't forget to be kind to strangers. For some who have
done this have entertained angels without realizing it.
- Bible - Hebrews 13:2

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http://photobucket.com/albums/y250/weezie13/
by MissJamie on March 04, 2006 01:11 PM
oh christmas tree oh christmas tree how peachy are theeeeeeeee!!!!!!! LOL! [Big Grin] [Big Grin] hope your tree makes it! it's looking just peachy [Smile] [Big Grin]

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*~*Last night I played a blank tape at full blast. The mime next door went nuts.
*~* http://www.imagestation.com/album/?id=2125497034
by beebiz on March 04, 2006 01:32 PM
Thanks for all the well wishes for and compliments on my my tree!

Weezie, the kleenex was Skeeter..... my 3-year old Jack Russell. She sometimes does the out of body's with me!! Still don't understand why you all didn't find the paper towels!! [Big Grin] [tongue] [Big Grin] [Smile] [Smile]

* * * *
My New Web Site If you take a look, please sign my guest book so I'll know you've been there! Also, check out the new African Violet addition to my site! Thanks
by MissJamie on March 04, 2006 02:16 PM
woah!! my dad's name is skeeter!! well his real name is James but everybody calls him skeeter...plus the guy across the street is named skeeter [Big Grin] [Big Grin]

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*~*Last night I played a blank tape at full blast. The mime next door went nuts.
*~* http://www.imagestation.com/album/?id=2125497034
by obywan59 on March 04, 2006 04:19 PM
Weezie, I've heard of that too. I think in one of the Laura Ingels Wilder books, they all got up early to pour water on young corn plants with frost on the leaves and managed to save the crop. I'm not sure exactly what happens when the sun comes up that injures the plants though.

I believe the Florida citrus growers keep spraying the water on the trees all night long or as long as there is below freezing temperatures. What that does is continually adds water on top of the ice that is forming. The temperature that water freezes into ice as everybody knows is 32 degrees and if you keep adding water, the temperature of the ice will remain at 32 degrees and the blossoms will be saved as they are hardy at that temperature. If you just spray the trees for a short time, you are probably doing more harm than good, as with no additional water, the ice could chill further and harm the blossoms.

Here is a link that shows critical spring temperatures for fruit bud development stages It gives temperatures for 10% kill and 90% kill for 9 different bud/blossom stages for various fruits.

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Terry

May the force be with you

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