The peach, Prunus persica, is a deciduous tree, native to China and South Asia, where it was first cultivated. It bears an edible juicy fruit also called a peach. The species name persica refers to its widespread cultivation in Persia, whence it was transplanted to Europe. It belongs to the genus Prunus which includes the cherry and plum, in the family Rosaceae. The peach is classified with the almond in the subgenus Amygdalus, distinguished from the other subgenera by the corrugated seed shell.

Peaches and nectarines are closely related, even though they are regarded commercially as different fruits. Nectarines belong to the same species as peaches. Nectarines have smooth skin, while peaches have fuzzy skin; genetic studies suggest nectarines are produced due to a recessive allele, whereas peaches are produced from dominant allele for fuzzy skin.

China is the world's largest producer of peaches and nectarines.

Read more about PeachDescription, Etymology, History, Cultivation, Cultural Significance, Nutrition and Research, Gallery

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Famous quotes containing the word peach:

    Nature, doubtless, has some compelling cause
    To glut the carriers of her epidemics—
    Nor did the peach complain.
    Robert Graves (1895–1985)

    I askèd a thief to steal me a peach
    He turned up his eyes
    I ask’d a lithe lady to lie her down
    Holy & meek she cries—

    As soon as I went
    An angel came.
    He wink’d at the thief
    And smild at the dame—

    And without one word said
    Had a peach from the tree
    And still as a maid
    Enjoy’d the lady.
    William Blake (1757–1827)

    The dog-wood breaks white
    The pear-tree has caught
    The apple is a red blaze
    The peach has already withered its own leaves
    The wild plum-tree is alight.
    Hilda Doolittle (1886–1961)