O'Henry Peaches Hit and Miss

Victoria is last for me. I’m testing a much later one called Autumn Prince. It still has green fruit. I suspect it will be too late for me to ripen here. I wanted something later, but I fear Autumn Prince is going to be too late.

1 Like

If I picked when you do as far as peach development, my Victorias would all be in the fridge. They are all nicely colored up, but I wait for at least a touch of softness in the flesh, usually near the stem.

Most peaches we pick anywhere from soft or firm ripe (i.e. a couple days away on the counter from soft). Peaches close to the end of the season we pick firm ripe. There are too many issues if we let them sit on the trees till soft. More drops than early or mid season peaches, and more damage from SWD if we let end of season peaches get soft. So we pick those firmer.


They very well could be mislabeled. Other than timing that seems reasonable I wouldn’t know. They are yellow fleshed, sweet with enough acid (tart), so they aren’t bland, and very free stone. Maybe I should try to graft them. It would be nice to know what they are…

I had Hale Haven this year that my parents bought that were only sweet, and not as good as these, to my taste buds. I also grow Contender that are about 10-14 days earlier than these 3 trees, but they are small still, so little production compared to this unknown variety. They taste similar to Contender, but are a little more tart??? So I can only say they aren’t Contender or Hale Haven or any cling stone variety. :smiley:

That would be about the right timing for O’henry (10 to 14 days after Contender). Perhaps they are just very productive O’henrys. Unlike yours, all of mine were not very productive over many years of production. I need to find out your secret.

1 Like

My Autumn Star may be entering a point that you call “firm ripe”.

When I tugged on them, they did not come out quite easily yet. It is my late peach.

Well, have one Indian free (grafted one nectarine tree) and one September Free nectarine (first year tree) on its tree still firmly attached tobtheir trees.

Mine were done over a week ago.

So you have seen SWD in peaches? I haven’t noticed any in any stonefruit but i don’t usually let anything get overripe on the tree. I have them thick in raspberries.

Have you grown or tried Sweet Dream peach? That ripened about Sept 1st for me.

1 Like


We don’t get SWD in the early peaches, or the mid season peaches. The reason is that we generally have more time (and energy) to keep all the drops picked up. But once the blackberries are done, picking up peach drops becomes a much lower priority (We really try to keep peach drops picked up during blackberry season to keep SWD out of the blackberries.) From then on SWD populations start building. They won’t touch firm fruit, but will lay eggs in soft fruit.

It also helps in mid summer because it’s generally so hot. SWD won’t lay eggs when it’s really hot. Plus if we do miss picking up a few drops, the sun breaks them down really fast, unlike toward the end of the season where they rot away much more slowly.

For a backyard orchard, this generally wouldn’t be an issue, simply because there are a lot fewer drops, and fewer scraggler fruit left behind on the trees.

This year we left far too much fruit on the some of the trees. It was to the point there were some trees around the time of Contender ripening that we couldn’t even sell the fruit. The sugar content suffered and the fruit was smaller than I wanted to sell.

I made the decision to do an “emergency thinning”. So we went through all the rest of the trees remaining and removed more fruit. I know experts maintain there is no size advantage to late thinning (something I don’t quite believe) but I was mainly after improving the sugar content of the remaining fruit. We had thousands of fruit on the ground, golfball size and up. There was so much decaying fruit on the ground, the rows stunk like rotting peaches. There were clouds of SWD.

I think it did achieve the goal though. We were able to sell all the remaining fruit and it tasted pretty good.

I haven’t tried that one. It is reported to be fairly bac. spot susc., which is a non-starter for me. Plus, it’s a sub-acid peach. I’m not that fond of sub-acid peaches. A lot of customers don’t like them that well either.