‘It’s looking real good': Franklin County cold weather crops doing well despite mild winter

Local peach grower says peaches have gotten enough ‘chill’ hours

FRANKLIN COUNTY, Va. – “It’s looking real good,” Franklin County peach grower Mark Woods said of his crop Friday.

The peach trees at Woods Farm in Franklin County are coming along nicely.

“We haven’t had any significant damage yet.,” Woods said.

In order for the peaches to develop properly, temperatures need to be between 32 and 45 degrees for 600 to 1,200 hours during the winter depending on the variety of peach.

Woods said that’s not in jeopardy despite the mild winter.

“We are going through and trimming. We are still trimming, but we’re not trimming as hard,” Woods explained.

Even so, the trees aren’t in the clear just yet.

“There are some varieties that are showing a little more open than the other varieties, but there are still some that are closed. It would have to get really, really cold right now to hurt them,” said Woods.

Wheat is another crop Woods said is being impacted by the mild winter.

“It’s actually growing more this winter, so hopefully (farmers) can crop it out better and then get the soybeans and get the corn planted in there,” Woods said.

Winter is not over yet, so the optimistic outlook could change, but for now, Woods is confident his crops will be just peachy.

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