I have a 3 year old peach tree in my backyard that I have been watching very closely this summer. I've been told that peaches don't grow in western Washington. I've been told the trees grow but the fruit do not. I've been told that my fruit may grow but it won't taste any good. The third year of a fruit trees life is supposed to be it's first fruit year. I've been anxious to see what, if anything, will happen.
I have been watering it regularly, fertilizing and mulching it. In the spring after the blossoms fell I started noticing little baby peaches were the blossoms once were. That disproved some of what I'd been told about peaches.
Like any good orchardist I went out and culled the baby peaches that were too close to each other or too small or too close to the ground to survive. Those would just steal nutrition from the peaches with promise. I hoped while I was away on vacation the peaches would grow big. They did. That disproved more of what I've been told about peaches.
For the last two weeks I have checked my peach tree daily carefully inspecting each fruit for proper coloring, watching for signs of bug infestation and gently squeezing to test for ripeness. Where possible I would lean in for a sniff of the fruit. Did it smell sweet? Would it taste sweet? Hard to tell when still on the tree.
Yesterday, finally, a few peaches had finally lost all their green and had a little bit of give to their flesh: ready to pick. Hurray!!! I called for a basket and picked 10 of the 20 peaches on the tree.
We cut into one of them and AAAaaaahhhhhh!! So sweet and juicy. What everyone says is wrong. You can grow good peaches in Western Washington.
Today I'll make Dave's second favorite pie, Fresh Peach Pie. Recipe and pie pics tomorrow! (His first favorite is Strawberry Pie)