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Peach varieties report 2009

Scott F Smith
14 years ago

I finally had some good luck on keeping squirrels away and tried many of my peach varieties for the first time this year. Here is a report on all my peaches that fruited this year, in order of ripening (the order I write them in my log). As many of you know, I am primarily growing older varieties of peach, because I like all of the unusual flavors in those older peaches. I have found them generally pretty easy to grow as well; the major problems are small size fruit and low productivity in some cases. Also they can be more susceptible to bacterial spot or fruit rotting.

Anjiri - this is an excellent donut-type peach that is quite early. It seems sweeter and more aromatic than Saturn but I have not tasted them side by side.

Gold Dust - a fantastic early yellow peach, highly recommended.

Clayton - This is an extraordinary peach with a mango-like? flavor that is of the Crawford school of peaches. It is considered small-sized by modern standards but next to all my older varieties it was on the large size if anything. It is also a modern highly disease-resistant peach making it overall a top backyard variety I feel. Too bad it has no good source today.

Galaxy - A decent white-fleshed donut peach with the bonus of being much larger than Saturn. Some of them split pits but those ones didn't rot so it was not a big deal other than cosmetic. The tree is very vigorous and productive. It is not quite as good as the other donut peaches for flavor but better than your average non-donut kind.

Saturn - had almost zero crop because I looked at it too late. A bit better that the Galaxy in terms of sweetness.

Winblo - Huge size and a fine delicate yellow peach but a bit low in flavor, possibly due to lots of rain around its picking time this year.

Ernies Choice - Similar comments to Winblo about the flavor, was raining a lot at harvest and it seemed watery.

Carolina Belle - This is a nice white peach with huge size. It has thin skin unlike Georgia Belle.

St. John - One of my favorite peaches; it tastes like a peach/apricot cross. Productivity and fruit size are low however.

Foster - Rich mango-like flavor, very sweet and much more sour than most peaches. My best-tasting peach of the year; very low productivity unfortunately.

Silver Logan - A few rotted but better than last year when most rotted. This is a unique huge white-fleshed peach with a melon-ish flavor in the background with plenty of nice sourness in front. If not for the rotting I would say its the best white-fleshed peach; with the rotting its still good enough that I'm keeping it.

Sanguine Tardeva - This is a fantastic red-fleshed peach similar to Indian Free but much earlier. They taste a bit like cherries. One of the very best. It lacks the rot problem of Indian Free; the only downside is some of the fruits can get mealy.

Peregrine - Decent but not great based on a limited sample.

Tashkent Gold - This is a yellow-skin nectarine, a novelty. Very sweet/sour, much more so than a store nectarine. Very good taste overall as well. But, the skin looked like worn leather and they cracked horribly in late July. So this peach has probably outlived its usefulness for me; great in a dry climate I expect however.

Rareripe - It is a small but quality yellow peach. Taste is mostly in the standard yellow peach category, with a good amount of flavor; not in the very top category but better than e.g. Ernies Choice and Winblo this year. Skin is very fuzzy; too soft-fleshed. Tree is still small and a seedling so flavor may change as it matures.

Georgia Belle - A fine peach, skin a bit thick. Very productive.

Pallas - A big disappointment, I had high hopes for this historical honey-type peach and it did not live up to it. It didn't have a whole lot of flavor and just about no honey-type flavor. The tree is still small so I will give it a few more years.

Indian Cling aka Indian Blood - A hard, red-fleshed cling peach. To me this is a cooking peach. They are excellent in pies or preserves. They are too hard for what I consider best fresh eating but are still decent that way.

Early Crawford - only one fruit, but that one was truly excellent. In the mango-like school of Clayton and Foster.

Oldmixon Free of Vintage Virginia Apples - It is not clear if this is in fact Oldmixon Free. It is a very good and large-sized white peach. Not quite as good as Silver Logan but getting there.

Black Boy - See Indian Free, I think this guy is the same variety under a different name.

Indian Free - A great, unique, excellent red-fleshed peach. It has that wonderful cherry-like flavor of like Sanguine Tardeva. Some rotted this year but most made it (better than last year when all rotted).

Heath Cling - I am having trouble figuring out how to ripen these. I found one on the ground that was all ripe and it was a superb-tasting juicy white peach with a flavor different than other white-fleshed peaches (it tasted like a yellow-white peach cross with something unique extra thrown in). Many dropped too early. Some I picked when hard and took them inside and they got good-tasting but never juicy like the one I found on the ground. This used to be considered the "best" American peach 150 years ago and I feel it has great potential, once I figure out how to ripen it. Note that the old writers state this peach can keep for a month after picking. The tree is very vigorous and productive.

Yukon King - had one fruit and it was fine but nothing special.

Sweet Bagel - This is a yellow-fleshed donut peach. Excellent rich and smooth flavor, very top quality!


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