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Low chill hours to hurt peach yields in Georgia, US

Georgia’s peach crop may suffer this year due to insufficient chill hours, which are essential to peach production, according to Jeff Cook, University of Georgia Cooperative Extension Agriculture and Natural Resources agent in Taylor and Peach counties.

Depending on the variety, peaches need a minimum of 500 to 800 chill hours. Much of the peach crop has been unable to break dormancy and progress from a closed, tight bud to a fruit due to this year’s unseasonably warm winter conditions.

“We’re about 300 hours or more away from where we want to be,” Cook said. “We are definitely going to see some yield reduction, but it is hard to know how much right now.”


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