Summer has hit and summer means peaches. Right now I've been buying them at the store. The New Jersey peaches have been really good. I suspect the farmers market will have them this week too and I'll start buying them there. But of course I want my own peaches. I lost one of my two peach trees last winter. I haven't a clue what killed it. I replaced it with an Elberta Queen. It will be years before I see peaches from that one.
But my other peach tree is just loaded down with peaches. And I thinned about 3/4 of them off of the tree. I've noticed that the squirrels were thinning more of them out. Many a day. So I had to protect it. On Friday I put the netting over. I had a choice of 14'x14' or 28'x28'. The 14' one is too small, but the 28' one is way too big. So there is a lot of extra fabric around the base of the tree.
I thought for sure after the last struggle to get free, he would give up. But this time he leapt and got really caught in the fabric. After five minutes he was still in there. Now I'm not a fan of squirrels by any means. To me they are rats with fluffy tails, but the last thing I want is for the squirrel to die a slow death in my netting. So I went out and had to help him out. He was not pleased by this. Nor was I for that matter. But at least it scared the heck out of him and he left the area for good. I haven't seen any squirrels going for the peaches anymore. I hope it stays that way.
Last year this was the day that I picked my first peach. I won't be doing that this year. They need a little longer. Also I've noticed that the peaches are much, much smaller this year than last year. I wish I knew why. I'm a real neophyte with fruit trees. It can't be water. We have had about 5" of rain in the last month. That ought to be enough. Surely peaches don't mind the heat we have been getting as Georgia comes to mind when you think of peaches and they are certainly hotter than me. Maybe I just need to thin them better. I did leave them a bit closer this year than last.
I also got around to protecting the apples on the trees in the back yard. There are two apples on one tree and seven on the other. So not many. I didn't think they were worth netting the whole tree. So I'm trying to net the individual apples. I'm thinking it probably won't work, but it doesn't hurt to try.