Position – Suncrest peach trees require full sun exposure, meaning they need at least 6 to 8 hours of direct sunlight daily.
When planting, dig a hole wide and deep enough to accommodate the roots without crowding or bending them. Place the tree in the hole and backfill with soil, ensuring that the graft union (the swollen area where the tree is grafted onto the rootstock) is above soil level. Firmly tamp down the soil around the tree to eliminate air pockets.
Size – Peach trees can grow to about six mts tall. Plan the site before planting, keeping the tree away from external walls, electrical lines, and other trees. Plant in a protected area if possible, as strong winds can damage branches and leaves.
Soil Type – Suncrest peaches prefer well-draining soil rich in organic matter. The soil pH should be slightly acidic to neutral, ranging from 6.0 to 7.0. If your soil is heavy or clayey, consider improving its drainage by amending it with organic matter such as compost or well-rotted manure.
Mulch – Add a thick layer of pine-bark mulch, keeping about 20-30 cm away from the tree trunk. Mulch will keep the soil moist and keep the weeds at bay.
Watering – Regularly watering young Suncrest peach trees to help establish their root systems. Keep the soil consistently moist but not soggy. As the tree matures, it becomes more drought-tolerant, but it’s still important to water during dry periods, especially when the fruits are developing.
Water every couple of weeks if there is no rain. Too much water can cause root rot but do not allow the roots to dry out completely.
Pruning – Prune peach trees during the dormant season (late winter or early spring) to remove dead, damaged, or diseased branches. Also, thin out crowded branches to improve airflow and sunlight penetration, which helps reduce the risk of fungal diseases.
Fertilising – Apply a balanced fertiliser formulated for fruit trees in early spring before new growth begins. One 200-gram Bag of Superfrass added to the soil every 4-6 months works well. Talborne Fruit & Flower or nourish liquid are also options. Avoid over-fertilisation, as it can lead to excessive vegetative growth at the expense of fruit production.
Pest and Disease Control – Monitor the tree regularly for common peach tree pests such as aphids, peach tree borers, and fruit flies. Use organic pest control methods; EM Control is a reasonable and efficient option. Implement proper sanitation practices, such as removing fallen leaves and fruit, to reduce the risk of diseases like peach leaf curl or brown rot.
Harvesting – Suncrest peaches are ready for harvest when they have reached their full size, developed their characteristic color, and have a slight softness when gently pressed. Harvesting time falls in mid to late summer, depending on your climate. Be gentle when picking to avoid bruising the fruit.