Is Peach A Vegetable? If Not What Is It?

By Paul Smart •  Updated: 04/25/22 •  5 min read

Is Peach A Vegetable? If Not What Is It? Peaches are a popular item in supermarkets and greengrocers. They are a deliciously sweet refreshing thing to eat in summer when it is really hot.  However, one of the most common questions is is a peach a fruit or a vegetable?

The peach is a fruit. A fruit is defined as anything that contains the seeds of the plant which in the case of a peach is the stone at the center of the fruit. If you plant the stone into the ground it will eventually grow. 

Produce is classified as a vegetable when either the stem, flower, root or leaves is eaten. So there are many examples of when fruit or vegetables are misclassified. Some common examples of this are things like rhubarb which is commonly thought of as a fruit rather than a vegetable. The other really common examples of fruit that are commonly referred to as vegetables are things like snow peas or beans which have pods that contain the seeds of the plant. 

Can You Grow A Peach Tree From The Stone Of A Fruit?

As mentioned above you can plant the stone of the fruit into the ground and it will start to grow. The resultant plant will be a peach tree, however, there is no guarantee that the peaches will have similar qualities to the fruit that the stone originally came from. This is because the fruit is cross-pollinated by insects that have been to other peach trees in many cases. This means that the genetic material in the seed will be different from the parent plant.

How Are Fruit Trees Of The Same Variety Produced?

The vast majority of fruit trees that are sold commercially in nurseries are produced via the grafting of plant material onto a selected rootstock. This is done for two specific reasons, the first is the grafting of the scion, which is a cutting from the fruit tree variety that you want to grow, ensuring that the genetic material is identical to the original parent plant. This ensures that you get consistent results in terms of the quality of the fruit.

The second key advantage of grafting onto a rootstock is that you can control the nature of the growth of the scion through the rootstock. The most common example of this being done is the production of dwarf fruit trees for home orchards which limits the size of the final tree.

Do You Need Two Peach Trees To Produce Fruit?

You only need a single peach tree to produce fruit, however, having a second one of a different variety can be advantageous in terms of the yield that you can achieve. The reason for this is that having a second tree increases the number of flowers present at the time of pollination increasing the chances of pollination.

Cross-pollination can be achieved using a second variety of peach or nectarine because those two types of fruit are actually the same species. The main difference between the two varieties is that peaches have fuzz on the skin while nectarines do not.

Do You Need Much Space To Grow A Peach Tree?

One of the common misconceptions about growing fruit trees is that you need lots of space. This misconception comes from the fact that many people look at commercial orchards which grow large trees in rows to maximize production.

However, most fruit trees can be espaliered against a wall or fence which means that you can produce your own peaches in Space as little as 6 ft by 2 ft. This method also has some distinct advantages in certain climates if you are planting against a brick wall. 

Brick walls are advantageous in areas where the temperatures are a little too cold for peach trees because they can radiate heat out at night to increase the temperature around the tree. This will often also protect buds and fruits buds from being damaged during critical times of the year.

However, if you live in a warmer climate it is often advantageous to plant away from a brick wall because peaches require a certain period of cold during the dormant period of winter to produce fruit the following season. This is sometimes referred to as chill hours. The chill hours required will vary depending upon the specific variety as there are low and high chill varieties available. To learn more about this click here.

When Do Peach Trees Produce Fruit?

Peach trees will produce fruit in midsummer to late summer depending upon your specific climate and the variety that you are growing. The peaches have only a short period in which you can pick the fruit which usually extends for a period of only 2 weeks. 

I hope you found this article useful and a great success growing you are peaches at home. If you have any additional comments or questions please leave them in the section below.

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Paul Smart