McKay Peach

Product Code: pmkay

Peach 'McKay' (Prunus persica)
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Details

Our McKay Peach tree provides and excellent peach that we have found to be hardier than any other peach we have tried. It's large, firm, of very good quality and freestone. The peach came to our attention as a chance seedling on a farm near our nurseries. This tree is self-fruitful. These peaches are great to eat, bake and cook with. They're tender and juicy and quickly will become your new favorite. It grows to be around 20-25 ft hight. All of our plants and trees are grown in Wisconsin so they are hardy and can withstand the harsh cold winters. This peach tree blooms in May and the large fruit ripens in early to mid-August.

Planting & Care for Peach Trees

Preparation

  • It’s recommended to space this variety to grow about 15-20 feet apart.
  • Peach trees thrive when growing in a location that receives full sun (at least 6-8 hours a day) and has a well-drained, fertile soil.
  • For your growing success, we do not recommend planting peach trees in either rocky or heavy, pure-clay soils.
  • Keep in mind that before planting you place it in a spot that isn’t going to get in the way of any wires, your other plants needs, etc.
  • An ideal range of pH levels for peach trees is between 6.0 and 7.0.

Opening Plant Material

  • Bare Root - Cut open the bundle (top and roots are tied) and separate all the plants. Soak roots in buckets of water until planted. Each plant type will be labeled separately for identification. Do not expose the roots to sun. They should never dry out. Keep roots covered. All bare-root plants must be trimmed when planted. 
  • Containers - Completely saturate all container plants by putting in a larger container of water until stops bubbling, then remove the plant from the container.
  • Grow Bags - Remove bag by using a utility knife to slit up the side and peel off the fabric exposing the soil and roots.

Planting Bare Root

  • Plant Bare root in fall. A good indicator if you can still plant is if the ground is still workable you’re good to go. If a hard frost is expected be sure to hold off on planting.
  • Dig a hole at least 6" wider and the same depth as the root mass. The crown or graft of the plant should be slightly higher than ground level where it was grown at the nursery.
  • Trim off the broken roots and branches.
  • Place fertilizer packets in hole (if purchased). Do not place other fertilizers in the planting hole. *Use Our Recommended Fertilizer.
  • Spread the roots and fill halfway with soil, then water until soil settles completely saturating the soil and planting pit.
  • Re-adjust plant and fill the hole with the rest of the soil.
  • Back fill the balance of the soil and water well. 

Planting containers

  • Peach trees can be planted in March, April October or November.
  • Dig a hole no deeper than the depth of the container and 6" or more wider on the sides.
  • Slide plant from pot by tapping on the bottom of the pot.
  • With shovel or knife trim bottom 2" off of the root ball for plants in plastic containers.
  • Rotate the plant to the proper position. Never lift or move plants by the tops.
  • Place the root ball in the hole.
  • Adjust the plant height so the root crown is slightly higher than the ground.
  • Place fertilizer packets into the bottom of the hole (if purchased). *Use Our Recommended Fertilizer
  • Back-fill the hole with soil, making sure the top of the root ball is visible and slightly higher than the soil around it.
  • Firm the soil around the plant. Water well to settle soil around the root ball.
  • Water frequently when newly planted. 

Planting Grow Bags

  • Peach trees can be planted in March, April October or November.
  • Plant the root ball just like you would a container plant. No trimming of roots is necessary for grow bags.
  • With shovel or knife trim bottom 2" off of the root ball for plants in plastic containers.
  • Rotate the plant to the proper position. Never lift or move plants by the tops.
  • Place the root ball in the hole.

Pruning - After Planting

  • Bare Root - Prune ALL bare root plants to reduce transplant shock and ensure success. Pruning should occur either before or as soon after planting as possible. All pruning should be done with a sharp pruning shears.
  • Container & Grow Bags - Although it is not essential for container plants to be pruned after planting, a light pruning to remove any broken branches during shipment and improve shape will help the looks of your new planting.

Pruning - Through-out the Season

  • Plan to prune your peach trees every year during their dormant season. In Zone 6 and north, you should wait until late winter.
  • First dormant season (a year after you plant the tree): Remove the central leader and direct the tree growth toward three or four strong scaffolds. Choose branches that are evenly distributed around the trunk.
  • Second dormant season: Prune away fast-growing new shoots but leave twig growth, which will be the fruit-bearing wood (on most peach trees).
  • Third dormant season: Prune off any broken limbs or crossing branches, but don’t do any more major pruning until the tree has produced a good-sized crop.
  • Mature-tree pruning: Once the basic shape of your peach tree has been established, make your pruning decisions in line with which branches are bearing fruit.
  • Prune back each of last year’s stems to half its length.

Watering - After Planting

  • Plants typically take approximately 6 weeks to establish new roots in your soil. During this period, water plants as often as every 2-4 days at the start and at least a minimum of once per week.
  • Beyond the 6 week establishment period, water once per week, unless rains occur.
  • Stick your finger into the soil around 3” to check soil moisture.

Watering - Through-out the Season

  • After the first season, plants should only be watered during extended periods without rain.
  • How do you know if your plants need water? The easiest way to tell is to touch the soil around the roots. If it is moist, there is no need to water. If it is dry, give it a good soaking with the hose end (no nozzle) watering the soil only, not the leaves.
  • Stick your finger into the soil around 3” to check soil moisture.

 

Go to our "Plant Features & Video Tab" for more information on this plant.

Handling & Planting Guidelines

Special Features & Videos on Peach Trees 

Special Plant Features & Tips

  • It’s recommended to space this variety to grow about 15-20 feet apart.
  • Peach trees thrive when growing in a location that receives full sun (at least 6-8 hours a day) and has a well-drained, fertile soil.
  • For your growing success, we do not recommend planting peach trees in either rocky or heavy, pure-clay soils.
  • Keep in mind that before planting you place it in a spot that isn’t going to get in the way of any wires, your other plants needs, etc.
  • An ideal range of pH levels for peach trees is between 6.0 and 7.0.
  • Apply 2 to 3 inches of organic material like wood bark (rather than an inorganic material, like rocks) around the root zone of your peach tree. Mulching helps discourage weeds, prevent evaporation, water-pooling and freeze injury around the trunk going into winter. In the fall, double the mulch layer or add a layer of straw for extra winter protection.
  • If a peach tree is left un-pruned, it may not become fruitful, it will not grow as well.

What is a bare root plant and how do I plant it?

 

How to plant containers

 

How & When to Prune Trees

 

ItemApprox Weight (lbs.)Approx Base Dimensions (diameter)Approx Height
#7 Grow Bag** 35-50 14-16" 5-8'
#10 Grow Bag** 55-70 18" 6-8'
#15 Grow Bag** 65-80 22" 6-10'
#20 Grow Bag** 75-100 24" 8-12'
1 1/4" B&B** 250-500 22" for single stems, 28" for multiple stems  8-11'
1 1/2" B&B** 325-600 24" for single stems, 30" for multiple stems  10-12'
2" B&B** 500-700 28" for single stems, 32" for multiple stems 10-14'
2 1/2" B&B** 600-1000 30" for single stems, 36" for multiple stems 10-15'
3" B&B** 850-1000 34"-36"  12-16'
3 1/2" B&B** 1000 36"  12-18'
10' B&B** 250 22"  10'
12' B&B** 325 24"  12'
14' B&B** 500 28" 14'
16' B&B** 600 30"  16'
2' B&B** 50 12-16"  2'
3' B&B** 60-250 16-22"  3'
4' B&B** 250 22-24" 4'
5' B&B** 325 22-24"  5'
6' B&B** 150-325 16-24" 6'
7' B&B** 500-700 28-32"  7'
8' B&B** 600-700 14-30"  8'
9' B&B** 700 32"  9'
#3 container* Less than 35  10" 10" 
#5 container** 40 11" 10.5" 
#7 container** 60 14" 12" 
#10 container** 80 14" 14 
#20 container** 160 19.5" 17" 
Bare Root* varies, but always lighter no soil on roots varies depending on item

*#1 - #3 containers and bare root are the only items that can be shipped FedEx and/or by our delivery trucks (see below for more information regarding pick-up and local delivery. 

**Any items over 100 Ibs., #5 - #20 containers or B&B can only be delivered by our trucks due to FedEx shipping weight and size restrictions. Our trusted trucks only deliver around a 100 miles radius from our corporate office in Waterloo, Wisconsin. Any item you order can be picked-up at our corporate office in Waterloo, Wisconsin or our new retail garden center Winterland Nursery for free (bare root orders cannot be picked up at Winterland due to lack of bare root coolers). See our estimated delivery schedule here

Growing Zones: 5-8

Bloom Time: May
Color: Green, Orange, White, Yellow
Plant Size: 20-25 ft.
Fruit: Orange & Yellow
Sunlight: Full Sun
Soil Conditions: Normal, Sandy, Clay, Acidic, Dry
Low Maintenance: No
Deer Resistant: No
Attracts Butterflies: No
Attracts Bees: Yes
Attracts Birds: Yes
Edible: Yes
Native: No

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