Colorado

Feb 1, 2010 9:50 AM by Associated Press

December chill not enough to hurt Mesa County peaches

Enough peach buds in Mesa County may have survived a spell of extreme cold in December to give growers a complete crop this spring.

The cold snap that brought temperatures as low as minus 22 in some areas killed an estimated 25 percent of Mesa County's grapevines.

Plant pathologist Harold Larsen, interim manager of the Colorado State University Western Colorado Research Center, says spring weather will ultimately determine crop sizes. But he examined several samples of peach buds and found 65 percent of the Alberta peach variety and about 33 percent of the Jersey Queen variety survived.

Since peach growers may thin 70 to 80 percent of buds as trees bloom, Larsen says growers tentatively can expect a full crop.

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