This very popular fruit, is native to China and/or Persia (Iran); probably brought to southern United States by Spanish invaders.
Related: apricots, cherries, plums, almonds, roses
Harvest season in the LV: July–September
Growing conditions: Peach production is in the warm season, but a cold season is important for tree health. Buds survive temperatures as low as -15° to -25°C (5°F to –15°F), but once the bud opens and the flower emerges temperatures below -5°C (25°F) can damage or kill the blossom.
Pollination: Some species self-pollinate, but most depend on honeybees.
Cooking/Preparation required: None! Can be canned or used in a variety of recipes.
Fertilizers or pesticides: Peaches can be grown organically; common commercial growers generally use a lot of pesticides, especially fungicides. Peaches are one of the ‘Dirty Dozen’ foods most likely to contain pesticides, including known carcinogens, endocrine disruptors, and bee toxins.
Nutrients: Low in calories, with Vitamins A & C, also K & Niacin; potassium, fluoride, and iron; antioxidants
Nutrient content can vary greatly depending on soil conditions, with organic methods and a soil rich in organic matter generally producing the best results.
‘Dirty Dozen’ or ‘Clean Fifteen’ ratings do not necessarily apply to produce grown on local farms — you need to check with the farmer to determine if and when any fertilizers or pesticides were applied.