Prunus persica 'Belle of Georgia'
Common Name: dwarf peach
Type: Fruit
Family: Rosaceae
Zone: 5 to 8
Height: 18.00 to 25.00 feet
Spread: 18.00 to 25.00 feet
Bloom Time: March to April
Bloom Description: Pink
Sun: Full sun
Water: Medium
Maintenance: High
Suggested Use: Flowering Tree
Flower: Showy, Fragrant
Attracts: Birds
Fruit: Showy, Edible

Noteworthy Characteristics

Prunus persica, commonly called peach, is native to China. It is grown for its luscious fruit but some cultivars are grown chiefly for there flowers and produce inedible fruit. Species trees grow up to 25' tall and wide but peach trees sold in commerce today are grafted to rootstocks which control the size of the tree. Dwarf trees bear standard size fruit, but have the advantage of fitting into smaller sites and being more manageable (easier pruning, spraying and harvesting).

Genus name from Latin means plum or cherry tree.

Specific epithet means Persia. Prunus persica reached Europe from China through Persia.

'Belle of Georgia' blooms with profuse pink blossoms in early spring and is followed by large freestone peaches with white flesh and creamy white skins blushed with red. Fruit ripens in late August (USDA Zone 5). The tree growing at the Kemper Center was grafted to a standard rootstock which results in a tree which typically grows 18-25' tall (shorter if properly pruned).

Problems

Peaches are susceptible to a large number of serious pest problems. A regular regimen of chemical spraying is needed in order to insure harvesting a good crop. Potential disease problems include peach leaf curl, brown rot, bacterial leaf spot and canker. Potential insect problems include peach tree borer, plum curculio, oriental fruit moth, root nematodes, mites and aphids. Very cold winter temperatures and late spring frosts often cause significant damage to the buds/flowers of peaches.

Garden Uses

Grown primarily for fruit.

This cultivar also has excellent ornamental value in terms of early spring bloom and can be effective as a small shade tree.