Germinating and Growing a Peach from Seed

You can sprout a peach seed and grow a tree, but it may produce fruit different than the tree the seed came from. However, some peach varieties grow out true to their parent stock better than others. Nonetheless, sprouting peach seeds is fun and educational, and if you start enough of them, you can produce your own trees for free.


Two Ways to Germinate a Peach Seed

Sprouting a peach seed can be done it two ways:

  • Germinating the seed by chilling it in the refrigerator.
  • Planting the seed directly into the ground and letting it sprout in the location where you want the tree to grow.

Early season varieties of peach are less likely to grow out the same as the parent tree. So, it is a good idea to use seeds from mid or late season varieties, if you want to harvest peaches. Start with several seeds because it is likely not all seeds will sprout.

Germinating Seeds for Transplant

If you want to germinate your seeds and start them in a container for transplanting, or simply to watch them germinate, you must first give them a cold stratification treatment by putting the seeds in the refrigerator.

After you eat the peaches, wash off all the remaining flesh and dry them. Then store the seeds until December or January.

To induce germination, soak the seeds in water for several hours, then place them in a plastic bag in slightly moist potting mix. Place the bag in the refrigerator at a temperature of 34º to 42ºF (1.1º to 5.5ºC). Avoid putting them near other fruit.

Check the seeds every week or two and look for a root emerging from one end. Germination takes between several weeks and several months, so be patient and keep checking.

Once you see a root emerging from the seed, plant it 2 to 3 inches (5 to 7.5cm) deep into a 1 gallon (3.7 liter) pot in moist potting soil. Put the pot in a sunny location and water it regularly until the seedling grows to a height of 1 to 2 feet (.3 to .6 meters) tall or taller. Then transplant it outdoors.

Germinating a Peach Seed Outdoors

Plant peach seeds outdoors in fall in well-prepared soil. This should be a spot with deep, well-drained soil and plenty of sun.

Place the seed 2 to 3 inches (5 to 7.5cm) deep into moist soil and cover it. Place a piece of wire mesh over the planted seed and tuck the edges into the soil to discourage squirrels or other animals from digging it up.

Water the area occasionally if the soil becomes dry. If the seeds are viable, they will sprout and grow in the spring. Remove the wire mesh as soon as you see the seedling growing.