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floridahillnursery
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Peach tree is getting old

Hello everyone, We have a peach tree in our garden "Florida Queen" its approx. 12 years old and 20-25' tall. This spring it appears to have lost its vigor, is this its swan song or is there anything we can do to prolong the end. We planted a Florida King last year acrossed the garden as everyone tells me that peach trees in Florida grow fast and furious only to burn out in 10-15 years. Is this true? I'm gonna miss her :?

JONA878
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Hi....I haven't replied so far to your post as I thought that there might be a grower over your way with more knowledge of Florida peaches.

My own expeciance of them is confined to trees under glass.
I would suspect that as a result the ones I have worked with would have far greater growth control put on them which would probably greatly increase their life span.
Still....I cannot see why if a tree is starting to look 'tired ' and cropping has slowed down then it might be well worth havin a go at rejuvinating it ny some diligent pruning.
Peaches like to crop best on young new wood, so cutting back on old structures to encourage growth must be benifitial to the tree, as well as getting that all important light into the centre of the tree where the sap run would be the greatest.
An apple a day.....keeps me in work.

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Gary350
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I just bought a house in Arizona I think the weather here is about like Florida. My mother has planted several trees from seeds and they have all grown 25 ft tall and produced fruit in 3 years. Growing season here is year round so a tree will do 3 years of growth every year compaired to TN where I have been living for 30 yrs.

I think your peach tree is too large for the hot weather it cannot take in enough water to produce fruit. Wait until cold weather and do a drastic trim. Cut off no less than 2/3 of the tree. Leave a few vertical limbs and cut off all the rest of the vertical limbs. You get the best fruit from the horizontal limbs. Leave several limbs that are parallel to the ground and cut off all the rest. Cut all the limbs short and stubby large heavy fruit will break off the limbs. Try to make the tree produce several large diameter limbs about 4 ft long each. New growth on the limbs will produce fruit the 2nd year. If you trim the tree this winter you will get no fruit next summer. Fertilize the tree with about 1 cup if 15/15/15 about every 2 weeks and about 1/2 cup of Urea every 2 weeks with plenty of water. Sprinkle fertilizer round the tree in a 5 ft radius. When the weather gets to 80 degrees no more fertilizer just water. Tree needs to have full sun all day for the fruit to get ripe. The tree will produce new growth next summer and lots of fruit the following summer.

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floridahillnursery
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trimming a peach tree

Thanks Gary, I will trim it back this winter. I hope she makes it... :D

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ReptileAddiction
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Gary is spot on. I do think that putting a ton of old compost around it will give it more needed nutrients. I think that the two reasons are A. the wood is old and B. the soil has been robbed of all the nutrients.

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floridahillnursery
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prune fruit tree.

Almost ready to start pruning. Just a couple more weeks.

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ReptileAddiction
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Mine just lost the last of its leaves this morning. I am going to prune and spray mine in January when I get my new special order trees so I can do everything at once.

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ElizabethB
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You may want to have your County Agent take a look at your tree. Free service. In the spring they are swamped and don't have the time to make home visits but at this time of year you should be able to get someone out there to look at it. Before you prune do get a pruning guide from your CA. Incorrect pruning can severely damage your tree.

Three years ago we removed 2 very old peach trees from my Mother's yard. She was reluctant to let them go because they had been my Dad's pet trees. It was time. They had quit producing and were gradually dying.

Any way - check with your CA.

LOL
Elizabeth - or Your Majesty

Living and growing in Lafayette, La.

When weeding, the best way to make sure you are removing a weed and not a valuable plant is to pull on it. If it comes out of the ground easily, it is a valuable plant. ~Author Unknown

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ReptileAddiction
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I cant even get in contact with my county extension let alone be able to get someone out here. I know what I am doing though. I will be fine.

cynthia_h
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ReptileAddiction wrote:I cant even get in contact with my county extension let alone be able to get someone out here.
So true; the county extension services have been cut to the bone and then some, even in the agricultural ("rural") counties of California. In the "urban" counties, they've disappeared altogether....

The Master Gardener programs are staffed maybe one day a week, which is unbelievable, since Master Gardeners are volunteers. They go through a lot of training (I looked into it but didn't have the wall-to-wall, Monday through Friday all day every day for several weeks time available) to earn the recognition as a Master Gardener and then staff telephones and community projects as volunteers. Yet my county has MG phone service one day a week...and it's not even all day. :(

Advice here at THG is friendly, experienced, and--most importantly--available.

Cynthia H.
Sunset Zone 17, USDA Zone 9

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ElizabethB
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If your CA is not available and there is an active Mater Gardener Association in your area that may be another free resource.

BTW - WELL worth the time and effort.
Elizabeth - or Your Majesty

Living and growing in Lafayette, La.

When weeding, the best way to make sure you are removing a weed and not a valuable plant is to pull on it. If it comes out of the ground easily, it is a valuable plant. ~Author Unknown

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ReptileAddiction
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cynthia_h wrote:
ReptileAddiction wrote:I cant even get in contact with my county extension let alone be able to get someone out here.
So true; the county extension services have been cut to the bone and then some, even in the agricultural ("rural") counties of California. In the "urban" counties, they've disappeared altogether....

The Master Gardener programs are staffed maybe one day a week, which is unbelievable, since Master Gardeners are volunteers. They go through a lot of training (I looked into it but didn't have the wall-to-wall, Monday through Friday all day every day for several weeks time available) to earn the recognition as a Master Gardener and then staff telephones and community projects as volunteers. Yet my county has MG phone service one day a week...and it's not even all day. :(

Advice here at THG is friendly, experienced, and--most importantly--available.

Cynthia H.
Sunset Zone 17, USDA Zone 9
A couple months ago I tried for over a month trying to contact them and never once succeeded. Have any ideas? Do you have a phone number or a website for me?

cynthia_h
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This is an [url=https://camastergardeners.ucdavis.edu/California_Counties_MG_Websites/]index page[/url] to the MG association of each county in California (I think; I didn't make sure that all 58 counties are listed).

I just used "San Diego County" as a test, given that your location is "southern California." On the second or third page *after* the index, the contact number and hours for the Master Gardener service is provided: (858) 694-2860 Monday through Friday, 9:00 through 3:00.

HTH. (I wrote a factual response about Extension staffing last night but can't find it this morning...must be getting spacey!)

Cynthia H.
Sunset Zone 17, USDA Zone 9

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ElizabethB
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Sorry to all. :oops: I was not aware that the extension offices and land grant universities were not providing the service or information that your tax dollars pay for. I did some research on different states and found a wide variety of results. Some had the kind of specific information that I get from LSU and my extension office. Others had only general information. Before I post a county agent recommendation I will research first and try to provide links.

OK? :?
Elizabeth - or Your Majesty

Living and growing in Lafayette, La.

When weeding, the best way to make sure you are removing a weed and not a valuable plant is to pull on it. If it comes out of the ground easily, it is a valuable plant. ~Author Unknown

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rainbowgardener
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Thanks!

I too have thought about taking the Master Gardener training. But not only am I already pretty experienced and educated about gardening, I am a little leery these days about putting myself in situations where I have to learn what someone else wants me to learn. (I have done enough of that in my years of formal education!) Specifically in this case learning about herbicides, pesticides, etc., which I will not use and will not recommend to others.

So I have my own garden volunteer program - I call it my Ministry of Dirt. I have several friends with various kinds of disabilities that make it hard for them to do the heavy work of gardening, though they love to have a garden. So I go over and spend time working their garden with them. It is a nice way to socialize with someone, which I much prefer to just sitting in chairs talking, and it is a good deed.
Twitter account I manage for local Sierra Club: https://twitter.com/CherokeeGroupSC Facebook page I manage for them: https://www.facebook.com/groups/65310596576/ Come and find me and lots of great information, inspiration

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ElizabethB
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My experience with Master Gardeners has been extremely positive. When I went through the program I was a state licenced landscape contractor and horticulture specialist. Both licenses required pasing a very rigorous test. I was also a life long avid gardener. When I went through the Master Gardener program I learned how much I did not know. I also had the pleasure of getting to know and work with like minded people. We have a very large and active membership that provides a wonderful service to our community. Being a Master Gardener has provided me with nothing but satisfaction, enjoyment, good friends and the opportunity to give back to my community.

I also have access to free experimental plants, and discounts at many nurseries and seed stores. I can also buy at 10% above whole sale from area commercial growers.

I do know that our Master Gardener association is one of the largest, most active and most comprehensive programs in the country.

If you do decide to participate I do not think that you will be dissapointed. With your knowledge and experience you would probably be a valued member. If your local is sub par you could bring it up to standard just by being involved and out spoken about how things should be done.

:oops: Sorry - don't mean to sound like I am lecturing. I am just very grateful for all of the wonderful experiences I have had as a Master Gardener.
Elizabeth - or Your Majesty

Living and growing in Lafayette, La.

When weeding, the best way to make sure you are removing a weed and not a valuable plant is to pull on it. If it comes out of the ground easily, it is a valuable plant. ~Author Unknown

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floridahillnursery
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Re: Peach tree is getting old

Hello everyone, so here it is. We cut the peach tree back by approx. 30% and new branches are popping out everywhere. The peaches are much bigger too. I think it was over producing in previous years. I believe this will extend the trees production years by at least 5 more years. Yippie! I was a little nervous cutting back such large limbs hoping they wouldn't die off. There you have it.... Thank you for all the help... : )

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floridahillnursery
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Re: Peach tree is getting old

I am happy to report that the tree has sent out several new branches and is regaining vigor... Thanks to everyone for all your help. : )



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