The peach (Prunus persica) is a deciduous tree indigenous to the Northwest region of China between the northern slopes of Kunlun Shan mountains and the Tarim Basin where the peach was not only first cultivated but also domesticated. The peach plant bears an edible succulent fruit known as the peach or a nectarine. Peaches and nectarines might be the same species, but they are commercially considered to be different fruit. Genetically, nectarines are produced from a recessive allele for fuzzy skin whereas peaches are produced due to a dominant allele for fuzzes on the skin, hence the difference.
The world's largest peach producer is China, followed by Spain, Italy, Greece, and the United States.
Cultivation Of Peach
Peaches thrive in a limited range of dry continental or temperate climates. Most of the peach cultivars need 500 hours of chilling climate between 0 to 10 degrees Celsius when important chemical reactions take place even though the plant might appear dormant. After the chilling period, the plant enters quiescence which is the second type of dormancy. The plant requires warm weather so that buds can grow and break. The trees can thrive in temperatures between -26 to -30 degrees Celsius however the buds become less cold tolerant during late winter. Eventually, the summer heat is required for a peach plant to mature which then begins to bear fruits in their third year of cultivation. The plant can have a lifespan of between 7 and 15 years.
Production And Top Producing Countries
China is the leading producer of peach, a deciduous tree native to the region of Northwest China that yields an edible a fruits whose extract contain a significant nutritional value. In 2017 China grew 14 million tonnes of peaches. Spain came in second producing 1.7 million tons followed by Italy with 1.2 million tons. A full list of peach producing countries is available below.