How To Grow a Peach Tree From Seed (and When To): All 13 Peach Tree Types

Georgette Kilgore headshot, wearing 8 Billion Trees shirt with forest in the background.Written by Georgette Kilgore

Gardening | March 14, 2024

Man sitting under a peach tree holding a peach fruit wonders how to grow a peach tree from seed and if there’s a peach tree care growing guide that shows how to plant a peach tree and how to grow a peach tree from a pit.

Discovering how to grow a Peach tree from seed can be a rewarding experience that can transform a landscape, add a fragrant aroma around your home, and enable you to have a nutritious fruit on hand whenever you fancy a juicy snack.

In fact, peach trees are also a great way to help your local bee population, which benefits everyone!

Buying a sapling and hoping that the transplant will flourish doesn’t provide the same level of satisfaction as growing your very own Peach tree from a small seed.

Although it takes much more effort, you can easily learn how to grow a peach tree from seed that you’ve gathered from a delicious peach.

This complete guide explains what you need to know.

How To Grow a Peach Tree From Seed: Growing Peach Tree From a Seed

One major benefit of growing a Peach tree from a seed, if you enjoy eating peaches regularly, is that it will be free.

All you will need is the pit of a freshly eaten peach, a few other materials, and room to plant the seedlings when it’s ready for outdoor growth.

Graphic instruction about how to grow a Peach tree from a seed with Peach trees in the background of steps numbered with Peach fruits.

But before turning over any soil, there are a few steps to follow to prepare the seed for germination.

And the first step is making sure you select the right seeds for your needs.1

How Long Does a Peach Tree Take To Grow? (How Long It Takes To Grow Peach Tree?)

Patience is a characteristic that gardeners and landscapers possess in spades. They are accustomed to laying the groundwork for plants, trees, and flowers, nurturing them with water, fertilizer, and a handful of tender loving care.

Peach trees fall into the category where they grow quickly enough that even the most impatient of us with newly green fingers won’t be daunted by the waiting time before fresh peaches are ready for plucking.

Peach tree growth chart showing full grown Peach tree on a line graph with Peach tree age on the x-axis and Peach tree height on the y-axis.

Once they get going, and you’ve learned the tactics of how to grow a Peach tree from seed, your new Peach tree will grow about 12 to 24 inches per year until it fully matures in year 3 or 4, and then the peaches will be ripe and ready.

Graphics showing the Peach tree growth stages including Peach tree dormant seed, Peach tree swollen bud, Peach tree bud burst, Peach tree green cluster, Peach tree flowers bloom, and Peach tree fruits set.

The whole process starts with a single seed, and knowing how to plant it correctly will determine the quality of the tree and the quality of the harvest getting the maximum benefits of planting trees like the Peach tree.

How To Grow a Peach Tree From Seed (And When To): 13 Peach Tree Types

First let’s have a look at the two main types of Peach trees, the freestones and the clingstones, from which over 2,000 other varieties have been cultivated. One of the differences is with the freestone variety the flesh of the fruit peels away from the pit easily, while the reverse is true with the clingstone peach.

When embarking on learning how to grow a Peach tree from seed, this may not seem to be an important piece of information to have, but when it comes to eating a peach fresh from the tree, the clingstone is the tastier choice.

This has to be taken into account when planting if you want to pick, wash and eat your peachy treasures. If baking is your specialty, then maybe planting a cultivar from the freestone variety may add a certain flavor to your pies.

Peach Tree

(Prunus persica)

Peach tree in oval frame on green background.
  • Family: Rosaceae
  • Genus: Prunus
  • Leaf: 1-3 Inches, deciduous and green
  • Bark: Dark grey and brown color. Smooth for some part and mostly rough in older trees
  • Seed: Wavy and it has ribbed pattern in the seed
  • Blossoms: Gold/yellow, pink, red/burgundy and white
  • Fruit: Summer dark maroon with a big, rough pit but it's edible raw or cooked
  • Native Habitat: Native Asia, specifically Northwest China
  • Height: 15-25 Feet
  • Canopy: 10-15 Feet
  • Type: Deciduous

When learning how to grow a Peach tree from seed, this may not seem to be an important piece of information to have, but when it comes to eating a peach fresh from the tree, the clingstone is the tastier choice.

This has to be taken into account when planting if you want to pick, wash and eat your peachy treasures. If baking is your specialty, then maybe planting a cultivar from the freestone variety may add a certain flavor to your pies.

Peach Tree NameVarietyDescription
1. Donut Peach TreeFreestoneMedium size with a funny shape, but very sweet and juicy
2. BabcockFreestoneNot very sweet, or tangy, so they are perfect for baking
3. HalfordClingstoneIt is mainly used for canning a juice
4. Early AmberSemi-FreestoneGrows well in mild weather states
Peach Tree NameVarietyDescription
5. Arctic SupremeClingstoneRed-skinned, very tasty white flesh inside
6. Desert GoldSemi-ClingstoneRound, red-skinned fruit
7. Belle of GeorgiaFreestoneRound juicy fruit with white flesh. Best for deserts

Close-up of ripe Babcock peaches hanging on a branch with green leaves in a peach orchard.

Peach Tree NameVarietyDescription
8. ElbertaFreestoneLarge with a yellow-golden skin
9. August PrideFreestoneLarge with yellow-red skin
10. Orange ClingClingstoneLarge and firm. Ideal for canning
11. Forty-Niner PeachFreestoneVery large and delicate. And just delicious
Top shot of Elberta Peach tree fruits with some showing yellow-golden skin.

(Image: jaymethunt13)

Peach Tree NameVarietyDescription
12. IndependenceClingstoneLarge, very good quality peach
13. Melba PeachesFreestoneIce creams and pies are made from this peach which has a rich flavor

Ripe Independence peaches, one cut in half, on a wooden cutting board with sprigs of green herbs.

All of the peaches above can be eaten raw, but some are less sweet than others.2

Some bakers add a touch of sugar to the not-so-sweet ones to offset whatever tartness there is so the peach can still be fully enjoyed in a nice pie.

When To Plant Peach Tree for the Best Yield and How To Plant a Peach Tree (How To Grow a Peach Tree From a Pit)

The saying that the “fruit doesn’t fall far from the tree” is an accurate one. If you’re fortunate enough to be able regularly to enjoy a peach from a particular tree in your area, using the seed from one of those peaches will grow a tree with peaches as close to the same flavor as possible.

This ability isn’t possible in all fruit trees but with Peach trees, it is an easy option rather than having to graft two different tree branches together.

The next step is to fully clean the pit of one of the peaches so it’s shiny and smooth and leave it to rest and air dry naturally.

After a few days, tap with a hammer or gently squeeze in a vice to crack open the pit to retrieve the seed. The best time to plant the seeds outside for germination will depend on which growing zone you live in to achieve germination because the seeds need to go through a few cold winter months for stratification.

Peach trees specifically grow well in USDA Hardiness zones 6-7 but can be grown also in zones 4-9. The best time to immerse your seeds in the ground outside is 4 weeks before the last frost is due so they can germinate below ground throughout the winter months, ready to poke through in the spring.

But it is best to start the whole process months before so your seeds have time to acclimatize, endure the chilling hours, and prepare themselves to become a member of the Rosaceae Peach tree family.3

Let’s look at what you’ll need to get started, and the process involved in how to grow a Peach tree from seed.

Step 1. Use a toothbrush dipped in a solution of water and bleach to fully clean the seed to prevent any mold from growing.

Once the seeds have air-dried naturally on the countertop, lightly spray them with a fungicide.

Step 2. A vice or a hammer can be used to crack open the kernel to remove the seed.

Step 3. Soak the seeds overnight in a container of water.

Step 4. Select a clear plastic, seal-able bag and fill it with a slightly moistened potting soil.

Once that is done, seal the bag and place it inside a refrigerator to mimic the cold it would normally encounter outside.

It will take about 2 to 3 months before the seeds are ready to be removed. This is indicated by the size of the roots which need to be at least 13mm long.

If you live in a state where the winters are cold and long enough, this stage can be conducted outside with the seeds planted individually in pots.

Step 5. After retrieving the seeds from the refrigerator, half-fill a large container with vermiculite or sphagnum moss so the roots will have space to grow.

The ideal time to place the seedlings outside will be in early spring once there is no further sign of any frost on the ground.

In 4 to 6 weeks the tap root will appear but will still need to become acclimatized to its new environment so initially place in a sheltered spot.

Keep the seedling in the pot will allow you to slowly move it over the next few days into a more sunlit position.

Step 6. Once the roots have outgrown the container, get your shovel and transplant your growing seedling into its new home in the sun.

For the first year, ensure that the roots are getting enough water and the soil has good drainage, and is constantly moist.

For the first year protect your young sapling from high winds and fertilize lightly twice a year until it matures, then increase the quantity of fertilizer.

Growing a Peach Tree From a Cutting and Growing a Peach Tree From a Seedling

Propagating a Peach tree from a cutting or from a seedling if you are considering a complete orchard, differs slightly from how to grow a Peach tree from seed.4

This method of how to grow a tree from a branch starts with selecting a healthy Peach tree and snipping off a branch at an angle.

  • Keep the cut end moist until it is planted.
  • Trim all leaves away that will be below the potting soil level in the container.
  • Rub the cut end into a rooting powder that will help the roots to grow, and then push it into the soil.
  • Place the pot in sunlight and wrap it in plastic to create a humid environment for better growth.
  • Check and moisten daily.
  • Once the roots have sprouted, transplanting outside is the next step.

Growing a Peach tree from seedlings essentially skips the steps of germinating peach pits. It saves time and can be a lot easier than tending to a seed for months in a refrigerator, moving it outside, and then transplanting it from a pot into the ground outside.

If purchased at the right time and at the right age, a seedling can be immediately planted in its new home in your garden which means you’ll have a harvest of fresh peaches just that little bit sooner.

Peach Tree Care: Watering Needs for Peach Tree Plants

A healthy Peach tree will produce healthy peaches. Care revolves around ensuring that for the first two years, the surrounding soil is kept moistened but not waterlogged.

Organic mulch needs to be spread a few inches away from the base along with a 10-10-10 fertilizer. As long as the temperature is moderate, the tree receives 5-10 gallons a week of water, then a successful harvest is guaranteed year in, and year out.

Planting Tips for Peach Tree: Pruning Tips

Following a few simple tips on how to grow a Peach tree from seed will greatly simplify the planting process and the reliability of your harvest.

First, the chill factor has to be met. Peach trees initially need to be in a dormant state when seeded, but even when they are mature the variety you choose has to go through this cold phase regularly every winter or it will not bloom sufficiently.

For this reason, selecting the correct Peach tree for your USDA plant hardiness zone is important.5 Other tips include:

  • Place fertilizer 8-12 inches away from the base of the trunk so roots and get as many nutrients as possible.
  • If your soil becomes easily waterlogged, it’s possible to create a raised bed from potting soil that will drain well.
  • Make sure that the hole is 3 times bigger than the container so roots will not be restricted in any way.
  • Prune the tree regularly in the first year to encourage growth. After that, prune at the end of winter before new buds appear.

Likewise, once the tree is mature, pruning can help get the maximum number of full, delicious fruits.

Common Pests of the Peach Tree

One of the first things you’ll discover when learning all about how to grow a Peach tree from seed and how to take care of a Peach tree is that there are a few pests that are annoying, while others pose a serious threat and have to be dealt with quick, fast, and in a hurry.

The aptly named Peach Tree Borer is a particular threat, laying larvae at the base of the tree, and can be the death of a tree if the infestation is severe enough, weakening it from the inside.

The Shothole Borer is similar in intensity, peppering the trunk with entry holes and feasting on the softer bark within.

Angled-shot of green Stinkbug on a leaf with serrated edges.

(Image: Emphyrio12)

Insects like Stinkbugs, the White Peach Scale, the Plum Curculio Beetle, and the Oriental Fruit Moth, are not as lethal to the entire tree, preferring instead to burrow into the peaches and consume the soft flesh inside, but the goal of growing a Peach tree is not to feed the insect population.6

Natural Pest Control for Peach Tree

Knowing the common pests for Peach tree is beneficial when growing them. But how to get rid of them?

Using harsh chemicals to control pests is not the solution in these times when global warming and finding effective and efficient ways on how to stop climate change are a concern. Natural pesticides, fortunately, can be made at home and be just as effective.

A mixture of canola oil or vegetable oil with a gallon of water is a natural pesticide that works by suffocating the pests. Another addition that can be added to water and sprayed over the leaves is dish soap.

For the infestation of borers, the treatment is amputation of the infected limbs or, if it is too late and the trunk is beyond redemption, then burning is the only option.

How To Stop Peach Tree Disease

Recognizing from the outset when learning how to grow a Peach tree from seed that diseases have to be expected, will prepare you for that time when at least one of them appears.7 Some of those diseases are:

  • Peach Leaf Curl
  • Peach Scab
  • Cankers
  • Brown Rot
  • Bacterial Spot: Bacterial Spot disease affects fruits and leaves of Peach Tree. When affected, peach fruits will have spots and leaves will show discoloration.
  • Gummosis
  • Crown Gall
  • Peach Tree Short Life
  • Phytophthora Root: Phytophthora Root causes Peach roots to decay which can result to Peach trees dying.

Some of these are worst than others in degrees of severity and can occur at different stages of the Peach tree’s development. All of them are detrimental to the health of the tree and the peaches themselves.

Organic pesticides can be store-bought specifically to treat individual problems and should be applied as per the instructions as soon as any of them are detected.

Companion Plants for Growing Peach Trees

Planting various other plants or trees around Peach trees can promote a healthy ecosystem where the strength of one species can bolster the weakness of another, similar to a symbiotic arrangement.

But wait, before planting anything you can get your hands on, be aware that some plants do not get on well with Peach trees.

Dangerous Companion Plants for Peach Trees

Knowing how to grow a Peach tree from seed is just the beginning, knowing when planting companion trees what plants will make bad neighbors is a critical piece of information.

A graphic that shows potato, broccoli, tomato, pepper, and raspberry plants that are dangerous companion plants for peach trees.

The 5 crops never to plant near Peach trees because they will either leech away too many nutrients or bring pests along with them are

  • Potatoes
  • Tomatoes
  • Broccoli
  • Peppers
  • Raspberries

Beneficial Companion Plants for Peach Trees

Other crops and plants will boost the pollination of the Peach tree. These beneficial buddies will help with protection from pests and even improve the quality of the fruits.

Angled shot of a bunch of Asparagus tips and stem.

(Image: Pezibear11)

They include:

  • Asparagus: Asparagus helps prevent Root-Knot Nematodes which can cause harvest reduction
  • Basil
  • Legumes
  • Garlic
  • Red clover: Red Clover helps keep soil loose which Peach trees need to thrive
  • Strawberries
  • Geraniums: Geraniums are very aromatic which helps keep pests away
  • Onions
  • Wildflowers
  • Daisies: Daisies attract insects, like bees and butterflies which can help Peach trees for pollination

How To Grow a Mango Tree From Seed

Handling a fresh Mango seed is a slippery business.8 If the goal is to grow a Mango tree from seed the easiest method is to let the pit dry out completely over a few days so it will be easier to handle.

Peeling back the skin of the pit from the top to reveal the seed inside is straightforward. Fill a small container with potting soil and gently insert the seed in the center. It will take from 7 to 10 days of watering and watching before a shoot emerges.

A balmy temperature of 70º F has to be maintained or the leaves will start to wilt and the plant can be endangered. It needs to be fertilized every month as it grows and watered regularly so the soil does not dry out.

Ensure that as the tree grows that the temperature is maintained between 70º to 75ºF and the humidity between 50-60% or the tree may not reach the 5-year mark when it may start bearing fruit.

Peach Tree Identification and Tree Seed Pods Identification

Being able to identify certain seeds before planting them can eliminate any doubts that may arise over the preceding years when the tree growing in your front yard doesn’t look like what you think it should.

Peach tree identification charts can help you select the exact variety that you’d like.

Peach tree identification chart showing Peach tree Leaves, Peach tree flowers, Peach tree seeds, and Peach tree bark images in circle frames on a green background.

Use this tree seed pods identification chart to differentiate between several popular seeds that are planted to start growing even more popular trees.

Tree Seed PodIdentification Features
Mango Seed4-7 cm long x 3cm wide with hairy strands on the surface
Apple SeedVery small. Dark brown with one pointed and round end
Peach SeedAbout 2cm long with a rough red/brown color
Horse Chestnut SeedRound, very hard red/brown seeds that children play a game called conkers with
Sausage Tree SeedLight gray and very long up to 60cm with a diameter of 10cm
Avocado Tree SeedCharacterized by its smooth brown surface, flat bottom, and pointed head
Nectarine Tree SeedThe seed is encased in a hard red/brown shell
Hickory SeedThe round husk splits apart into 4 segments to reveal a sweat seed inside

At the end of the day any tree, even if it has been started from a cutting or a seedling, would initially have to begin as a seed.

Those peaches that you relish from one tree can be replicated when you understand fully how to grow a Peach tree from seed and all the Peach tree types.9

Frequently Asked Questions About How To Grow a Peach Tree From Seed

What Are the Growing Zones For Peach Tree (Where To Grow and Best Growing Conditions for Peach Tree)?

USDA hardiness growing zones 6-7 are perfect for growing these types of trees where the temperatures are not too hot nor too cold with sufficient rainfall. Although zones 4, 5, 8, and 9 are also suitable.

How Much Sunlight Does Peach Tree Need Each Day?

A mature Peach tree requires 8 hours of sunlight a day.

Where Can I Learn How Far Apart To Plant Peach Tree?

For a standard Peach tree, the recommended distance between them is 15 to 20 feet apart. This information on how to grow a Peach tree from seed into a tree is critical to avoid future nutrient problems if the trees are planted too close together, and for having bountiful harvests.

How Long Does It Take for a Tree To Grow (Peach Trees)?

Peach trees take between 3 to 4 years to reach maturity.

What Are the Steps on How To Grow a Lemon Tree in a Cool Climate?

In colder climates, plant the Lemon tree next to a wall so the citrus tree can leech heat from it whenever the temperature drops.10

What Are the Steps on How To Grow an Apple Tree From Seed?

Similar to an Avocado tree, the process can be started by placing a sealed plastic bag containing a handful of seeds embedded in damp moss in the refrigerator for about 6 weeks. After germination has occurred, the successful ones with roots can be planted in pots.

What Are the Steps on How To Grow a Cherry Tree From Seed?

First, the seeds need to be soaked for 5 minutes and then put into cold storage in a plastic container a few days later when they have dried off. Cold stratification can take about 3 months for the Cherry tree seeds to be viable for planting before they can be potted.

Are Nectarines Similar to Peaches?

Yes, they are close relatives with similar appearance and taste profiles. Some other fruits in the same family are plums, cherries, and even apricots.

Read More About How To Grow a Peach Tree From Seed


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