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Eat five to nine pieces 
of fruit a day!
~ Peaches and Nectarines ~ 

Lose weight Home - The different types of fruit - Tree fruit

strawberry picture Apple - Apricot
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strawberry picture Fig
strawberry picture Peach - Nectarine
strawberry picture Pear - Quince
strawberry picture Plum

Peach              Nectarine
Prunus persica        Prunus persica var. nectarina
Family: Rosaceae     Family: Rosaceae

Description & storage
Peach: Round juicy fruit with downy yellowish-red skin and a rough stone.
Nectarine: Type of peach with a thin smooth skin and firm flesh.

Peaches and nectarines always have to be picked ripe. They do not ripe well after they have been picked. You can keep peaches and nectarines for one to three days but you have to be very carefull, one small bruise and it will go bad on that spot.

Tree / shrub
The peach and nectarine trees or shrubs grow upto 5 x 5 m. It is self pollinative and has an impressive blossoming.
Darwin (1731-1802) noticed that peach trees spontaneously produced nectarines and that this also happens the other way around. He even describes a tree that produced a fruit that was half peach half nectarine and later fell back producing peaches.

Short history
Peaches are from Chinese origin. They go back to the 10th century B.C. and are often found on illustrations from that time. The Chinese have developed an incredible amount of peach of races.
The peach got it's name around 300 B.C. The greek philosopher Theophrastus thought it came from Persia and named this lovely fruit to that country. In the first century the fruit is mentioned by Romans who wrote that they imported the fruit from Persia. It is supposed that the peach reached Europe around the year 0. In England they don't show up before 1650 A.D.
Strange enough, the nectarine is never mentioned in descriptions from the time Before Christ. Nectarines are first mentioned in America in 1720 when they grew between the peach trees in Virginia. A.J. Downing registred 19 nectarine races in America in 1857.
Today many types of nectarines are cultivated.

Peaches and nectarines taste best consumed "warm" from the tree. Often jam is made out of it because they can't be stored fresh. 
Nectarines are mostly eaten with the skin as peaches are mostly peeled.

Types and family
There are races with the stone fixed to the pulp and races with a loose stone. The pulp varies in colour from white to yellow and certain types have red stains.
The colour of it's skin varies from green to dark-red.
Most remarkable characteristic of the peach is it's downy skin.

Peculiar characteristics

  • If your fruit crop is large and you don't know what to do with all those lovely ripe peaches you can make jam out of it. You also can purate the peaches to freeze them in for winter use; you can make a delicious chutney or you can make juice out of it. Peach juice is nectar from the gods according to the Romans and it can be freezed in as well!
  • never plant a peach shrub or tree near an almond tree. As the peach is a brother of the almond the two sorts are easily crossed. The result is bitter nuts;
  • Most peach stones have little holes in it or have a ribbed structure;
  • Peach trees or shrubs can easily be grown out of a peach stone;
  • Peach stones are used to make the coal for filters;
  • If you buy peaches look for ones with a creamy to gold undercolor that indicates ripeness. The amount of red on peaches depends on the variety, it is not always a sign of ripeness. Look for fruit that has a well-defined crease and a good fragrance. Unripe peaches have a green undercolour and will never ripen. Peaches and nectarines only ripen well on the tree.
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