Adopted on May 9, 1895.
Passage of the act to adopt the Peach
Blossom, Prunus persica, on May
9, 1895, was prompted by Delaware's
reputation as the "Peach State," since
her orchards contained more than 800,000
peach trees yielding a crop worth
thousands of dollars at that time.
Peaches were cultivated in
China before written history, and moved
to Persia (Iraq) along silk trading
routes. The epithet persica denotes
Persia, which is where Europeans first
obtained peaches. Greeks and especially
Romans spread the peach throughout
Europe and England starting in 300-400
BC. Peaches came to the new world with
explorers of the 16th-17th centuries,
with Portuguese introducing it to S.
America and Spaniards to N. America
(Northern Florida/Georgia coast). Native
Americans and settlers distributed the
peach across N. America into southern
Canada, and it is cultivated in 2/3 of
the 48 contiguous states today.
A small tree with a spreading
canopy, usually 2-3.5 m in cultivation.
Trees are short-lived, generally living
only 15-20 years, and even less in
cultivation (e.g., the average tree life
expectancy in Georgia is 8 years).
Leaves are linear with acute tips,
folded slightly along the midrib,
sickle-shaped in profile
- Leaf: Alternate, simple,
lanceolate, serrated, 3 to 6 inches
long, often curved along midrib,
shiny dark green above, paler below.
- Flower: Light pink to
carmine, to purplish; 1 inch in
diameter. Single locule, single seed
inside superior ovary, surrounded by
hypanthium. Color of inner surface
of hypanthium is indicative of flesh
color; whitish-green = white, gold =
yellow. Petals can be large and
showy, or small and curved on
margins. Flowers are borne singly on
short peduncles (almost sessile),
from lateral buds on 1-yr-old wood;
usually 1-2 flower buds/node.
Ornamental peaches contain fully
double flowers, having many petals
and a carnation-like appearance.
Colors range from dark pink to
- Fruit: Fuzzy drupe, 3
inches across, yellow and red, hard,
ribbed pit inside encloses the seed,
very delicious and juicy, ripens in
- Twig: New growth is red
and green, later turns gray brown,
buds are blunt and gray fuzzy, spur
- Bark: Dark gray,
initially smooth with elongated
lenticels, later splits and becomes
Form: A small tree up to 15
feet with a spreading crown.
§ 308. State flower.
The peach blossom, as originally
adopted as the floral emblem of the
State on May 9, 1895, shall be the
official state flower. (29 Del. C.
1953, § 508; 50 Del. Laws, c. 289, §
||Plantae -- Plants
||Spermatophyta -- Seed
||Rosaceae – Rose family
||Prunus L. – plum
(L.) Batsch – peach