Central Texas peach farmers predict great harvest
Cool winter weather has this year's peach crop looking good in Central Texas.
Mark Wieser has been growing peaches in Fredericksburg for decades.
"I've seen the orchard in full bloom as early as 22nd of February," she said. "It's really quite early at this point which is very good."
That's good because once those buds bloom there's the risk of a freeze destroying the precious peaches.
“If it lasts three to four hours it pretty well kills the bud," Wieser said.
While cold weather could still harm this year’s crop, it's also what made it possible.
"These trees on the average have to rack up about 850 hours of cold hours, something 45 degrees or colder sometime during the winter,” Wieser said. “If we don't get that then peaches will not break dormancy."
That means a warm winter could mean no peaches. While this winter was uncomfortably warm for growers, the cold weather target was reached.
Now, they're hoping for some warm days to help the blossoms bloom. If the weather cooperates, the first peaches of the spring are only two months away.
"The best peaches are the ones that can hang on the tree the longest and develop more sugar and so about the mid part of June we get into really good summer peaches and from then all through July are fabulous peaches," Wieser said
Growers are now wary of a late spring freeze and damaging thunderstorms.