apple is an excellent thing, until you have tried a peach."
George du Maurier (1834 — 1896)
To help you choose:
- Select slightly under ripe peaches for picking
- Select firm-ripe peaches for canning and drying
- Select fully ripe peaches for freezing or eating fresh
- Select very ripe peaches without any sign of mold for making
Clingstone — Great
for jams, jellies and pickled peaches
Semi-Free — Almost ready
to pop around from the seed
Freestone — Great for
eating, freezing and making delicious recipes
Below are our wide choice
of varieties and the dates available:
|| Mid-Late May
History of Georgia Peach Production
The first known peach was mentioned in Chinese literature as early
as 551 B.C. Culture of peaches moved from China to Persia and
eventually to Rome and then throughout Europe.
Spaniards introduced the peach to North America in the 16th Century. When
English settlers arrived they thought the peach was native to this
country because it was found growing abundantly around Indian villages.
Georgia peach production began between 1870 and 1875. At
that time there were only a few varieties that would grow well
in the South. A farmer could only be profitable if he were
able to sell the crop to commercial markets in the North. During
these years several new varieties were developed that ripen in
late May or early June and improved transportation prompted marketing
attempts in northern cities. At first, steamships were used
to transport the fresh peaches to their markets. However, rail
service was much better and enhanced the chances of the peaches
arriving in top condition.
Samuel H. Rumph, a Marshallville, Georgia native, is considered
the originator of Georgia's commercial peach industry. A
noted horticulturist, he developed the Elberta peach (named
for his wife) in 1870 at Willow Lake Nursery near Marshallville. In
1875 he also developed a peach shipping refrigerator and the rigid
mortised-end peach crate. These inventions made practical
the safe transit of fresh peaches to markets outside Georgia. Mr.
Rumph also contributed to the success of the peach industry
with the design of a box on casters, which held six crates of peaches
and ice. These were loaded in boxcars, shipped to port and
loaded on coastwise steamers for New York. He later conceived
the idea of a railcar that would haul many crates of peaches with
ice bunkers at each end. Mr. Rumph shared this idea with the railroad
companies without asking for a royalty. It was indicative
of his unselfish character to have never patented his models. With
this development peach growing expanded rapidly in Central Georgia. The
first considerable volume of Elbertas on the New York market created
a sensation with their color, size and quality. Elberta was
the most widely planted of any variety ever introduced, being grown
in every peach producing area of the world.
Today Georgia now produces more than 40 commercial peach
varieties, which are divided into two general categories: clingstone
and freestone. Although
Georgia is named the Peach State, it actually ranks third in U.S.
peach production after California and South Carolina. In 2006, the Georgia peach crop produced 110 million pounds, which grossed $30 million in revenue.