[NAFEX] Fwd: "Skinny" Peach Trees Are Space Savers

Lon J. Rombough lonrom at hevanet.com
Thu Nov 15 09:17:52 EST 2007

Begin forwarded message:

From: ARS News Service <NewsService at ars.usda.gov>
Date: November 15, 2007 4:58:03 AM PST
To: ARS News subscriber <lonrom at hevanet.com>
Subject: "Skinny" Peach Trees Are Space Savers
Reply-To: ARS News Service <NewsService at ars.usda.gov>

Crimson Rocket Peach Making Its Way to Market

ARS News Service
Agricultural Research Service, USDA
Sharon Durham, (301) 504-1611, sharon.durham at ars.usda.gov
November 15, 2007
--View this report online, plus photos and related stories, at 

Crimson Rocket peach trees look like tall, thin cousins of the more 
classically-shaped peach trees. These "skinny" trees provide an 
attractive, space-saving tree that produces full-size peaches that 
could make their way to consumers in 2008.

Agricultural Research Service (ARS) horticulturist Ralph Scorza and his 
colleagues in the Appalachian Fruit Research Station at Kearneysville, 
W.Va., developed the "columnar" variety. The tree was patented and 
released in 2001 for experimental evaluation in orchards across the 
United States.

Crimson Rocket has been licensed by several commercial nurseries in 
Missouri, Pennsylvania and California. The trees have been in 
commercial orchards for the last three years and Crimson Rocket fruit 
may begin to appear in local marketplaces next spring.

A fully grown Crimson Rocket tree has a diameter of about five feet and 
fits neatly into a small yard. In commercial settings, the compact 
trees can be planted much closer together than conventional trees that 
spread out to a width of 16 feet. Crimson Rocket's columnar shape 
translates into more peaches per acre, while land and production costs 
are similar.

According to Scorza, Crimson Rocket was bred for high-density 
production systems, allowing for a new concept in peach production. Its 
shape also makes it a novel and useful fruit tree for home gardens.

Crimson Rocket has two copies of a naturally occurring gene that sends 
the branches skyward. It produces yellow-fleshed, dessert-type peaches 
that are firm, sweet and aromatic. The medium-sized fruit stores well 
and softens when completely ripe.

ARS is the U.S. Department of Agriculture's chief scientific research 


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