Cold will help peaches

Cold will help peaches
Farmer Bob Welker
Farmer Bob Welker

ALBANY, GA (WALB) - It's been a weird winter in south Georgia.   The warm start worried peach growers.

They need cold weather for the crop to develop.  Now, with this cold kick we've been having lately, their trees may bare more fruit than they originally expected.

"With out having any cold weather to this point it was questionable and they really couldn't tell us how bad it would be,"  said farmer Bob Welker.

With the colder weather Bob Welker thinks that things will look a lot better than expected. His peach trees need a certain number of "chill hours" to produce peaches.

"I do know if we don't have that could weather they will not produce normally, " said Welker.

But Welker says the past few winters have been unpredictable. Growers need temperatures to remain cold in order to have a good bloom.
This offbeat weather also brings another concern for his u-pick farm,

"They want it pretty and spring like weather and you'll do a lot of you know with the kids on the weekend it's a nice thing to do. When if it's still cold of course it will still affect it."

But he does have a back-up plan if the weather keeps people away around picking time. "For instance if we had peaches and no pickers. We take it to a farmers market in Tifton or Albany or a close by market and sell it there."

Welker does expect blooms to appear in late February and hopes to harvest in Mid May.

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