It is a boon to have a peach tree growing in one’s garden. If the climatic conditions are right then one can look forward to a delicious harvest every year. Our neighbour’s peach tree is a drawcard for Speckled Mousebirds, Redwinged Starlings, Black-collared Barbets and Cape White-eyes as the various owners or tenants have paid scant attention to the ripening fruit. So, why have I titled this post Alien Peach Trees?

They are ‘alien’ only in that they have not been planted in a garden. This fine specimen has been growing near the road on the edge of town for years.

The blossoms delight every spring and I have enjoyed seeing passers-by pick the fruit. Then ‘developers’ moved in with their bulldozers and wreaked havoc on all the natural vegetation by pushing over the trees and scraping the ground clean of any grass, flowers or bulbs … and left it for pioneer weeds to take it over, leaving no space for anything indigenous … those got scraped too … for what? Fence posts were erected a year later and nothing has happened since, but that beautiful peach tree is gone forever.

If one drives through parts of the Free State during spring, one is struck by the number of peach trees growing in the wild along the highway.

These must have had their origin in the pips thrown out by occupants of passing vehicles. There are dozens of these trees for kilometres at a time. Their blossoms surely provide a welcome source of nectar for bees and other pollinators.

In time, these trees too probably provide a welcome bite of fresh fruit for anyone who can draw off the road safely to pick them. I haven’t been there during the fruiting season. Aliens they might be in the sense of not being indigenous trees, but not unwelcome. There is no sign of them being invasive and they provide a quiet bounty for those in need.


18 thoughts on “ALIEN PEACH TREES

  1. We have a peach and a nectarine tree, but the birds and beetles take most of the fruit.
    Even the fruit flies use them.
    We’ve never been ones for eating a lot of fruit so we don’t mind sharing.
    Besides,we have lemon trees and a bitter orange tree that remain untouched by wildlife
    We also have a couple of wild plum trees that fruit every year and the birds and bugs leave these alone as well.

    Liked by 1 person

      • It certainly has its moments
        I am busy trying to grow as much produce as poss.
        With R&T so high the land has to pay its way like the rest of us.
        I also grow various chilis and I just finished a batch that is hot enough it could probably be weaponised!
        My lips are still burning after the initial tasting.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. We used to have peach trees in our yard, but they got past their prime and no longer produced good fruit. We miss them–especially in the winter when we crave peach pie!


  3. Peaches are one of my favorite fruit. The trees recently have begun to grow in Maine, but somehow the fruit is not as good as the peaches that grow in the South. How wonderful that you have peach trees growing here, there, and everywhere yet are not invasive. But, the story of the chopped-down peach tree is a sad one.


    • There are a number of undeveloped sites around here that must have been sold, after which they are cleared of natural vegetation; are fenced in some cases; and left. I cannot understand the thinking behind such a process – unless the new owners realise then that they need more finance to actually build, or that their original plan wasn’t really a good one.

      Liked by 1 person

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