Because of its small size Bonanza peach trees are easy to grow

June 20, 2018

It was a TV show that didn't seem to have a chance. In fact, the first season's guest stars were actually paid more than the cast because the producers worried no one would watch a group of unknown actors.

After almost being canceled, this larger-than-life western lived up to its name and became a true "Bonanza."

The word Bonanza came to English from Spanish, meaning originally "fair weather at sea," which meant successful shipping and prosperity, from the same Latin that gives us "bonus." Soon it meant any unexpected fortune.

The aptly named Bonanza Dwarf Peach Tree (Prunus persica Bonanza) is a true genetic dwarf peach tree that naturally only grows 5-feet tall, or even smaller.

The bonus is that this miniature tree produces full-sized juicy, yellow-fleshed peaches. The yellow fruits with a red blush ripen in mid-June.

In spring, the tree bursts into bloom with stunning bright semi-double pink flowers that contrast well with the dark green leaves.

Ask your local nursery to order the Bonanza peach tree or try mail order sources such as Fast Growing Trees (

Because of its small size, Bonanza peach trees are easy to grow in a large pot on the deck or patio, or tucked into corners of your yard where a full-sized peach tree would take up too much room.

You can fertilize your Bonanza peach tree each spring with a slow-release, balanced organic fertilizer.

Trees grown in pots will need to be fed every few weeks, using fertilizer low in nitrogen.

Because Bonanza peach trees are self-pollinating, you can plant a single tree and still get fruit. If you do plant them outdoors, set the trees 5 to 6 feet apart.

Choose a spot that gets at least six hours of direct sunlight each day. Best soil is well draining, with a pH of 6.0 to 6.5.

To let the air circulate freely, prune the branches so that the tree has an open center area. Prune while the tree is dormant.

Even though peach trees naturally drop some immature fruit in June, your tiny tree may still have too many peaches for them all to grow and ripen properly so thin the crop when the fruit is just an inch in diameter.

Keep a good 6 to 8 inches between remaining young fruit.

Your Bonanza dwarf peach will usually bloom and fruit when the tree is just 3 or 4 years old. Peaches grown in pots often yield slightly fewer fruits than trees planted directly in the garden.

A miniature Bonanza peach tree will be a great low-maintenance addition to your patio, deck or small garden.

Soon enough you will have homegrown peaches for cobblers, ice cream or just to eat out of hand.

As for the TV show, the stars Lorne Greene, Michael Landon and Dan Blocker all became wealthy from Bonanza. Dan Blocker even owned a chain of steakhouses named Bonanza, that later became Ponderosa. A bonanza indeed.

  • Paul Barbano writes about gardening from his home in Rehoboth Beach. Contact him by writing to P. O. Box 213, Lewes, DE 19958.

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