How to get sweeter peaches?

Hi everyone!

I have 1 Empress peach tree, 1 Golden Glory peach tree and 1 Golden Prolific nectarine tree. All dwarfs trees in pots growing in a greenhouse (summer) and in a heated shed (winter) because they are not hardy at all in my region. This year I got really huge, beautiful, juicy and disease free peaches. The only problem? They were not sweet.

I read about this subject and it’s seems that adding molasse to their « diet » would do the trick. I have no idea how to proceed… Quantity? Ratio water/molasse? Etc…We have a drop by drop irrigation system and I don’t want to clog this system…

Any advices would be greatly appreciated

First photo = my harvest. Second photo= an Ontario (left) peach casually sold in supermarkets in my region and one of my priced peach!

Zone (maybe 5) in Canada


Likely to much water and maybe lack of nuttient diversity? I know fruitnut on here gets super hogh brix in his greenhouse fruit by controlling water during and up to ripening. The fact that yours is much larger also points to too much water!


Your answer makes total sense and I thank you for it! But I have fig trees, paw paws trees, persimmons trees, quince trees, peaches and nectarines on the same water line so difficult to determine the right amount of water to distribute every day because all fruit trees on the same water line can not receive different amount of water separately. Infortunately same amount of water for everyone…

even with this years drought, i never water my fruit trees. i agree with Carlin. too much water. maybe limit your watering to once every 7 days or cut it out all together. what kind of soil do you have there? i mulch heavily around all my trees . it holds moisture around the root zone. i get it from a arborist.

Hi Steve;

Thanks for your input. Unfortunately you seem to have forgotten that my peach trees are in pots either in a greenhouse (summer) or in a shed (winter) not in the ground… Marc

Picking too soon, not enough sun or too much water are the usual causes. Never heard of adding molasses.

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sorry Marc. i didn’t see that. still could be too much moisture or maybe a nutrient is lacking? i do have stuff like currants , tomatoes and peppers in fabric pots but have never done any trees. only perennials that survive outdoors in pots is my currants anything else dies. i don’t have anyplace that i could over winter them. tried to keep some potted perennials in my unheated garage. all died.

I’ve heard of using diluted molasses to help the beneficial bacteria in the soil. it also has micro nutrients that benefit the plants. too much will attract critters and bugs. i add some to help my compost pile along as well as urine and expired milk.

Other than watering, thinning matters a lot. Picture of a tree and if possible showing the fruit spacing would help to say if you are thinning enough. On controlling watering, even on drip each outlet should have a dial to control the water for that specific outlet. You can manipulate that to pull back watering for the peach trees, at least 1 month before the harvest season. I don’t have any experience growing fruit trees in containers, but others can comment on exact gallons/week to help you (based on your location).

Peaches are by nature lower brix than nects. I agree that water, sun exposure, and leaf to fruit ratio are likely the critical issues, assuming you are using some standard pot culture nutrition formula specifically for fruit plants.

You are pretty far north for peaches, perhaps your sun is too weak.

Ahh, but the summer days should be very long!

Obviously, which helps them grow bigger cabbages but not necessarily sweeter peaches. I’ve no idea how much light intensity or heat units effect brix, but the blandest Japanese plums I’ve ever eaten were my sisters Satsumas grown by the coast in N. CA. Was it entirely the fog or did low temps play into it? She doesn’t even try to grow peaches.

In England the pursuit of sweet peaches requires a nice southern wall.

It seems that growers to the south of me often report higher brix than I can achieve here in an average year and the poster lives near Montreal in z4