A growing peach nestled amoung diseased leaves.

A growing peach nestled amoung diseased leaves.

One of the ways I’ve been modifying the homestead is by slowly replacing the traditional suburban landscaping with edible plantings. I see no reason why decorative and functional can’t describe the same plant! In past years I’ve added blueberries and raspberries to the yard, but I’ve also been scheming to bring a self-pollinating fruit tree into the mix.

For Mother’s Day this year, my loving family gave me the peach tree I’ve been dreaming about for a few years. Hubby and I cleared a few scraggly shrubs from the yard and gave the new fruit tree a prominent place out front. I figured in a few years our investment would bear fruit, once the tree was established in it’s new home.

The good news is that it won’t take that long to get some home grown peaches. There are about 50 small peaches forming on this tiny tree, which was a huge surprise. The bad news is that the tree also has Peach Leaf Curl, which forms weird warty red spots on it’s leaves, especially in cool, wet springs, just like the one we’re having.

Peach Leaf Curl is a preventable fungus, but once the spots appear, there’s nothing that can be done for that season. Most likely the peaches will still be edible, which is good news. I’ll be thrilled if we get to share even just one home grown beauty. Once most of the leaves fall off in autumn, I can treat the tree for the fungus to make sure it doesn’t return next year. I just wish the grower had bothered to treat the tree before selling it to me!