Thinning peaches

I posted this video this morning on youtube. It’s a bit hard to speak on camera when there’s no script or rehearsal, so the video is not very professional or polished. It’s just a very basic video intended for new employees who know nothing about thinning peaches.

Don’t know if anyone would interested on the fruit forum, but I thought I’d post it. Video is 20 min long.


Thanks that helps a lot. I still have hope of some fruit this year. So far it looks like only Indian Free has any fruit buds. I only have PF-L13, Arctic Glo, and the Nectaplum. I’m going to cut them up and graft anyway. I have been keeping the scions at 33F, they have not started growing (yet)…


Loved the video.

The quality was good and its greater value is that it is genuine and real.



Thank you Olpea for taking the time to create this helpful video. A couple of follow up questions: Assuming the video was taken in the last few days, it is my understanding that your area is still subject to late spring freezes that could lessen your crop. Do you always thin about this time of year and not worry about later freezes that could damage some of the remaining buds after thinning? Also, looks like your trees were about at the shuck stage, do you find the shuck stage to be the best time to thin? Thanks, Chris.

Thanks for sharing Olpea! Its a great video. I find thinning to be one of the most challenging lessons to be learned by the new peach grower. Its just painful for them and they tend to thin far too few. I posted it on our facebook forum for newbie fruit growers and I know it will be of huge use. Our early peaches that most everyone grows here are now sizing up and this will be a wake up call to get out there and do something before everyone has broken limbs on the ground.

Dont worry about not being polished, the video is awesome!

Very nice! Awesome job. I just love these instructional photos & vids.

You said you weren’t trying to be movie star - but you’re a star never-the-less, that’s for sure!!

I appreciate you, and all you do for those of us who need the help. Thanks for taking the time.


For my area, the risk of spring frosts now are fairly low if one considers the 10 day forecast. I think we are through with the cold in my area. Perhaps ideally, one would wait till after the risk of spring frosts is completely passed, but we have too much to do to wait.

Peaches in the shuck are still subject to abort (especially on certain varieties and young trees) but this year has been ideal spring weather with more fruit set than we’d like.

It’s also harder to see the doubles in the shuck, so for just a few trees, I’d wait to thin. We can’t wait, so we thin as much as we can now, knowing peaches will advance faster than we can manage them.

Thanks Eric, Jerry, Mike, Drew for the nice comments.

I hope I get to thin one day the past two winters have been terrible. Also a chance of frost, lows are still hitting the thirties. In 7 days the low is 33F. Spring will just not come here. I have bever seen it like this in 50 years here. 30 degrees below normal almost all winter. It figures I buy fruit trees and we have record breaking historic lows for 2 years in a row. It seems the north is just getting colder and colder. If it happens again next year I’m ripping out the peach trees. Put in mulberry and other hardier trees that are local.
With all that said I may have a few fruit buds alive. I hope so, but then we have frosts coming.

I updated Flash this evening just so I could watch your video. You might not know it, but that’s a big compliment.

I enjoyed your plug for the pruners and the nod you gave to the Apple Orchard Guy in New York. Both ARS and Sprint should be thanking you for promoting their products.

Contrary to the wise and leathery 72 year old I was expecting to see, there was a wise spring chicken (rooster) on the screen.

Even though that late freeze a few weeks back made sure that I wouldn’t have to worry even a little bit about thinning most of my fruit, some peaches still had heavy sets. Yes, I’m one who does find thinning emotionally difficult. But until I watched your video, I had been feeling pretty good about my progress in overcoming that. My own solution for overcoming my reluctance has been to remove a little bit each time I’m outside, starting with clusters. That way I wouldn’t feel the “loss” as much. The joke is still on me because I see that I need to do much more than I anticipated. I’ll just keep telling myself, “I’m helping the tree as well as helping the fruit.” The way that Nature and chance happenings have been going this year, peaches and grapes seem to be the only things that might still do very well this year. I’ll just take a deep breath and believe as I thin harder.

Olpea, thanks for posting the video. It was very helpful.

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Thanks Olpea for the great explanation as usual. You are gifted with the ability to explain concepts and make them easy to understand. You would make a good college professor.


Lol, I recognized after the fact I was wearing both a Sprint hat and shirt. It wasn’t intentional. My wife used to work for Sprint and got all the “freebies” we are still wearing.

Truth be known, we don’t even have our cell service with Sprint anymore. :blush:

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@Olpea Thanks for the great video, I learnt i need to thin my trees harder and earlier.

My peach trees have these same large sections of dead buds like the screen shot below.
There are no leaves and no fruit, just fruit and leaves at the top.
It was perfectly leafed & healthy wood last year.

Is this cold damage? or do peaches just do this.


That’s a great question! I have wondered the exact same thing for years. I think its cold damage because in the fall there are buds all over those sections of shoots, but they fall off over the winter. The strange thing is that they do it every single winter, regardless of how cold it is.

Some trees do it worse than others, but they all do it. It’s the uppermost shoots which do it mostly. I’ve been to other peach orchards around here and see the same thing on their trees. It doesn’t appear to be universal though because I’ve seen lots of pics of peach trees which don’t have that dead space on the shoots.

I’m wondering if it’s also related to nutrition. This year I plan to spray some chelate minerals to see if that has an impact. Sometimes we just prune off everything above where that dead zone starts.

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Its troubling because that is a prime spot to hang top quality peaches up there in the sun.
I emailed Dr Desmond Layne at Clemson and linked to this forum.
Maybe he will be so kind to enlighten us.

That’s a great thought David. Actually though, Dr. Layne left Clemson, so his email may not work. He left Clemson to go to Washington State I believe.

Please do more of these videos. There is no need for scripts or fancy editing. Key info is often lost in editing. While watching the video I was looking at many other things, like past pruning, your terracing and etc. All of that is good info. The frogs are annoying though.


:laughing: We’ve had a lot of rain and some of the lanes have some low spots which hold water. The frogs will take advantage of any water they can get.

@Olpea Still loving this video. Thanks for putting it up again. Ive been reviewing it as we head into pruning season.

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I’ve brought back @Olpea peach thinning video. It is worth watching again. Also, new members may not have seen this.

Just spent 3+ hours this morning thinning two mature peach trees. It is labor intensive.

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I think the video is gone. Brady