USDA Researchers Say Georgia Peach Crop Worst in 100 Years

Low chill hours this year coupled with an unexpected spring freeze hit Georgia peach growers hard. In fact, Tom Beckman a USDA fruit and nut researcher told WMAZ-TV in Macon, GA, it’s one of the worst in 100 years.

“The closest comparison we have right now is, looking back at the historical records has to go back all the way to the 1930s,” he said.

Beckman also said Georgia peach growers do not grow low-chill varieties, and with the warmer winter, trees did not get enough chill hours needed.

‘We have never been so short. Hardly any of the commercial material that’s out at grower’s orchards was designed to deal with chill this low. We’ve never seen trees this low on chill before,” he said. “I haven’t, in my entire career, seen trees in some cases receive less than half the chill that they normally expect.”

Beckman, who works at the USDA-ARS’s Southeastern Fruit and Tree Nut Research Laboratory in Byron, GA, estimates it’s been more than 100 years since the state has had a crop like this year’s. There will be fruit on trees, but just not as bountiful as in previous years.

“We have fruit. In fact, we’ll probably have fruit throughout the season, but it’s going to be a lot less than what we could consider normal. I’d say it will be well under a half a crop,” Beckman said.

Topics: ,

Leave a Reply

One comment on “USDA Researchers Say Georgia Peach Crop Worst in 100 Years

Stone Fruit Stories
Stone Fruit
August 29, 2017
What Will Be the Next Generation of Cherry Canopies?
Take a look at what the future has in store for NC-140 Sweet Cherry Canopy Architecture and Rootstock Trials. Read More
Insect Control
August 22, 2017
Stink Bug Threatens High-Dollar Crops in California
While populations are low, it appears invasive pest has recently stumbled upon the state’s peaches and almonds. Read More
Stone Fruit
August 1, 2017
Researcher: Cherry Growers Must Use Disease Management Strategies When it Comes to SWD
Dave Jones, Extension Educator with Michigan State University, says growers are well accustomed to monitoring and thinking ahead. Read More
Stone Fruit
July 31, 2017
Clemson Peach Breeding Hones in on Disease Resistance, Flavor
In spite of the March freeze that devastated growers in the region, one producer says breeding for taste and quality needs to prevail. Read More
Disease Control
July 25, 2017
Brown Rot Sinks its Teeth into Michigan Cherries
Unseasonably wet weather causes outbreak, and growers are warned it can spread to peaches. Read More
Stone Fruit
July 6, 2017
Oriental Fruit Moth One Shifty Pest
This moth has many characteristics that have allowed it to adapt and thrive in many peach and nectarine growing regions. Read More
Stone Fruit
July 5, 2017
Floyd Zaiger is the Sweetness Scientist Behind Zaiger Genetics
Floyd Zaiger’s innovative lab extends to the orchard, where he and his kids’ crosses produce some of the world’s most fabulous fruit. Read More
Apples & Pears
June 19, 2017
Bee-ware: New Resources Released for National Pollinator Week
New videos, webinars available during week-long observance. Read More
Stone Fruit
June 17, 2017
Keep an Eye out for Peach Leaf Curl
Follow these tips to prevent the disease next year. Read More
Stone Fruit
June 12, 2017
Monster Sweet Cherry Crop Expected
But the tart cherry crop is forecasted to drop nearly one-quarter from 2016. Read More
Stone Fruit
June 6, 2017
California Dried Plum Crop Expected To Double
After the disastrous 2016 bloom, a more normal crop this year has the prune industry back on track. Read More
Stone Fruit
June 5, 2017
Michigan State University Awarded Grant to Tackle Spotted Wing Drosophila
Research team seeks solutions to protect state’s cherry crop. Read More
Stone Fruit
June 4, 2017
Multiple Leader Training Optimizes Sweet Cherry Labor Efficiency
The final intensive training system to be examined in the North American NC-140 Sweet Cherry Canopy Architecture and Rootstock Trial Read More
Stone Fruit
May 23, 2017
Northeast Peach Crop Rebounds
After a mild winter and relatively uneventful bloom time, the crop is setting up nicely for the region. Read More
peach buds and blossom
Stone Fruit
May 8, 2017
USDA Researchers Say Georgia Peach Crop Worst in 100 Years
Spring freeze, not enough chill hours make for a tough growing season. Read More
The Latest
Stone Fruit
September 25, 2017
Many Pollinators Boost Cherry Yields — N…
Researchers are finding a multi-pronged approach to pollinators give both sweet and tart cherry growers the best results. Read More
Stone Fruit
September 9, 2017
Southeast Peach Prices Soar with Small C…
While the Georgia and South Carolina peach crop is tiny, locally grown peaches are selling for big bucks. Read More
Farm Marketing
August 31, 2017
Winning at Farmers’ Markets – Secr…
Small farmer Rodney Stackhouse cashes in at 25 farmers’ markets a week by growing 200-plus varieties of stone fruit and empowering a crackerjack staff. Read More
Stone Fruit
August 29, 2017
What Will Be the Next Generation of Cher…
Take a look at what the future has in store for NC-140 Sweet Cherry Canopy Architecture and Rootstock Trials. Read More
Insect Control
August 22, 2017
Stink Bug Threatens High-Dollar Crops in…
While populations are low, it appears invasive pest has recently stumbled upon the state’s peaches and almonds. Read More
Stone Fruit
August 1, 2017
Researcher: Cherry Growers Must Use Dise…
Dave Jones, Extension Educator with Michigan State University, says growers are well accustomed to monitoring and thinking ahead. Read More
Stone Fruit
July 31, 2017
Clemson Peach Breeding Hones in on Disea…
In spite of the March freeze that devastated growers in the region, one producer says breeding for taste and quality needs to prevail. Read More
Disease Control
July 25, 2017
Brown Rot Sinks its Teeth into Michigan …
Unseasonably wet weather causes outbreak, and growers are warned it can spread to peaches. Read More
Stone Fruit
July 6, 2017
Oriental Fruit Moth One Shifty Pest
This moth has many characteristics that have allowed it to adapt and thrive in many peach and nectarine growing regions. Read More
Stone Fruit
July 5, 2017
Floyd Zaiger is the Sweetness Scientist …
Floyd Zaiger’s innovative lab extends to the orchard, where he and his kids’ crosses produce some of the world’s most fabulous fruit. Read More
Apples & Pears
June 19, 2017
Bee-ware: New Resources Released for Nat…
New videos, webinars available during week-long observance. Read More
Stone Fruit
June 17, 2017
Keep an Eye out for Peach Leaf Curl
Follow these tips to prevent the disease next year. Read More
Stone Fruit
June 12, 2017
Monster Sweet Cherry Crop Expected
But the tart cherry crop is forecasted to drop nearly one-quarter from 2016. Read More
Stone Fruit
June 6, 2017
California Dried Plum Crop Expected To D…
After the disastrous 2016 bloom, a more normal crop this year has the prune industry back on track. Read More
Stone Fruit
June 5, 2017
Michigan State University Awarded Grant …
Research team seeks solutions to protect state’s cherry crop. Read More
Stone Fruit
June 4, 2017
Multiple Leader Training Optimizes Sweet…
The final intensive training system to be examined in the North American NC-140 Sweet Cherry Canopy Architecture and Rootstock Trial Read More
Stone Fruit
May 23, 2017
Northeast Peach Crop Rebounds
After a mild winter and relatively uneventful bloom time, the crop is setting up nicely for the region. Read More
Stone Fruit
May 8, 2017
USDA Researchers Say Georgia Peach Crop …
Spring freeze, not enough chill hours make for a tough growing season. Read More