Starting Peach/Nectarines from pits

I’ve always been fascinated by the idea of growing a tree right from a pit, last summer I collected a bunch of peach/nectarine pits and decided to give it a try.

After collecting the pits, they were stored in a sealed zip lock bag in moist sphagnum moss and put in the fridge for 2 months…when I took them out, I left them in the moss and planted them in regular potting soil some time around February of this year, about 4 to 6 weeks later. I had this:

This is what they looked like at the end of July, they’re even bigger now…

So far I’ve planted 2 in the ground and they’re doing well with no input from me…I’m not sure which is which, peach or nectarine, or whether they’ll fruit or not. I they don’t no big loss other than a little time. That said, I’m encouraged by how much they’ve grown in such a short amount of time that they’ll be successful.

You can see update on my blog Jaxsuburbangardens.


You can always graft on a known variety.

Here are mine, apricot seedlings. I stratified the seeds around Mid-June, and planted them late August.

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I now grow my own peach rootstocks. Well, they grow themselves, at the base of the tree they fell from. All I do is move them in the winter to their own area. Now that I have a lot of peaches I get 10-20 new ones each year. Peach roots are good for grafting on peaches, plums, and apricots.


Scott, did you just confess to not doing thorough cleanup under your peach trees? Oh, wait! Maybe it’s just belated cleanup since you move those babies later. :wink:

I had a crowded peach mini-forest at the back of my compost pile this spring. The pits that I threw out in the kitchen compost all seemed to wind up in the same area.

That’s neat…sound like you could start your own nursery…I’m very curious to see how these do…with the citrus greening problem in Florida, a number of the growers have started switching over to peach/nectarine, although I’ve heard people say they can be high maintenance,

I’m just amazed by how much size they have put on in such a short amount of time…on the down side, I don’t know if they are a variety suited to our climate, so they may not even fruit…time will tell…

Peaches are the easiest fruit tree to grow from seed, they just grow themselves. I have very few plums and zero apples pears cherries or apricots coming up.

@MuddyMess_8a, I remove all the weeds but any fruit that falls is good compost so it just stays there. Composted fruit must by definition have all the chemicals needed to make more fruit.

Figured they must be easy if I was able to do it…

all of my other trees are about a year old or less, so it will be some time before they start putting out any fruit…

Awesome, I hadn’t had any luck getting nectarine seeds to come up.

I have started several from peach pits. I break the outer shell with a vise and plant just the seed. These are later grafted onto with known varieties. I tried someone else’s peach from seed and it had a strong peach flavor, but low sugar and not a lot of flesh.

Would you mind explaining the process you followed for your apricot seedlings in a bit more detail? I am interested in trying this. Thanks in advance.

Hi Scott- I’ve often had apricots volunteer in the garden- at least, I think that’s what they were. I suppose, on reflection, they could have been plums.

I stuck a few 'cots in a planter last week in hopes that they’ll vernalize and sprout next spring. Then I’ll know for sure!

I agree Scott my peach seeds also seem to grow themselves. I have read seeds from earlier varieties (as well as donuts) don’t germinate that well naturally, but I’ve seen seedlings come up under just about any peach tree. Still, when I gather seeds to plant in a row, I try to gather from varieties after Redhaven.

I’ve had good luck growing my own apple rootstocks by just gathering a bunch of seeds and putting them in a plastic bag in the fridge, then planting them in the spring.

I’ve not had any luck germinating plum seeds, but I’ve not tried planting very many.

We get sprouts of apples, pears, peaches, sour cherries in the same way. Once you have fertile seed you will get starts. My plums are thicket forming which as you know means they send runners through the ground. They divide easily when they are dormant. The plums or apricots never have grown from seed yet . I used to say peaches never came up from seed so one of these days the apricots and plums are going to surprise me.

I crack the apricots seeds, then I soak the kernels in water for about half an hour. After that, in a sandwich bag I add miracle gro indoor potting mix soil, and a bit of water—The soil should stay moist but not wet—and finally I add the kernels. Then I store the sandwich bag in the fridge in the egg section for about two months. Every three to four days, I open the bag for about a minute so the seeds could receive oxigen.

Once the kernels start to root, I take them out of the bag and plant them in their individual pots.


Thanks. When is the best time of year to start the whole process?

EDIT: Thanks, Derby. Found this link

There is more on this topic on the thread seed savers, I think there is a way to link to it but I am not so sharp on how to do it.

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I plant peach seeds (later varieties) immediately when I squish them out of the drops. Then I forget about them till they come up in Spring.

Hard to believe it’s been almost 2 years since I started these peach/nectarine seedlings. Here’s a picture of the one that’s doing the best. The amount of growth it’s putting on is incredible. Probably the right combination of soil and sun. Not sure how much longer until I might see fruit on it, maybe another two years if I’m lucky.


You will probably see blossoms and a few fruits next year (from the larger tree).

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