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Description

Grow peaches in regions where temperatures fall well below zero. This exceptionally hardy variety, perfect for northern gardens, consistently yields large crops of sweet, juicy, medium-to-large fruit. Also features lovely pink flowers that bloom and attract bees in spring. Developed in Raleigh, North Carolina, introduced in 1988. Disease-resistant to bacterial spot. Cold-hardy. Freestone. Ripens in mid to late August. Self-pollinating.

Characteristics

Bloom Color Pink
Fruit Color Red
Fruit Size Medium - Large
Pollination Self-pollinating
Ripens/Harvest Mid-late August
Shade/Sun Full Sun
Soil Composition Loamy
Soil Moisture Well Drained - Average Moistness
Soil pH Level 6.0 - 7.0
Taste Sweet
Texture Firm
Years to Bear 2 - 4
Zone Range 4 - 8

Zone Compatibility

This Variety's Zone Range 4 - 8
My Hardiness Zone ?
The USDA hardiness zones offer a guide to varieties that will grow well in certain climates. Each zone corresponds to the minimum winter temperatures experienced in a given area. Make sure that your hardiness zone lies within the zone compatability range of this variety before ordering.

Size & Spacing

Mature Size

When your tree matures, it will be approximately 8 - 10' tall x 8 - 10' wide.

Recommended Spacing

We recommend spacing these trees 8 - 10' apart to ensure room for growth.

Recommended Pollinators

This variety is self pollinating.

In many cases, you may still want to plant pollinating partners to increase the size of your crops, but with self-pollinating varieties doing so is optional. You'll get fruit with only one plant!

Tools & Supplies

Having the proper tools and supplies when growing your own can make the difference between a good harvest and a great harvest! Here's a list that our experts recommend for this variety.

Planting & Care

Learn all about how to grow peach trees in The Growing Guide. An entire section of our website dedicated to your growing success.

Shipping Information

Estimated Delivery Date

You don't pay until it ships.

We work hard to make sure that your order arrives at the ideal time for planting in your location. That's why we only ship living products during certain times of the year. Order now and your credit card won't be charged until your climate is suitable for planting success and your order is shipped.

Shipping Restrictions

Agricultural regulations prohibit shipment of certain types of trees and plants. We do our best to provide a selection that gives everyone a chance to grow their own. This item cannot be shipped to all of OR. Parts of CO.

Our Promise of Satisfaction

1 Year Warranty

Every order comes with our promise of satisfaction. If you aren't completely satisfied with your order, let us know within one year for a free one-time replacement or refund.

Tags

We've 'tagged' this item with specific keywords that help you find other products that share features or characteristics with this one. Select a tag below to view all the items that have that particular trait.

Questions & Answers

Start typing your question and we'll check if it was already asked and answered. Learn More
Browse 6 questions Browse 6 questions and 19 answers
Why did you choose this?
Stark Bro's Store
I am in hopes that Contender peach will not succumb to late frosts in our area and that we can grow peaches here. Others grow peaches here but they are very sporadic. Contender and Intrepid seemed to be worth a try.
Henry N on Aug 24, 2016
I chose this because it's a cold weather variety, and I live in Iowa; I don't want any chance of losing a whole year's crop from one late frost.
DARRYL V on May 7, 2016
I am in hopes that Contender peach will not succumb to late frosts in our area and that we can grow peaches here. Others grow peaches here but they are very sporadic. Contender and Intrepid seemed to be worth a try.
Henry N on Aug 24, 2016
For my daughter.
GARY O on May 15, 2016
I chose this because it's a cold weather variety, and I live in Iowa; I don't want any chance of losing a whole year's crop from one late frost.
DARRYL V on May 7, 2016
I purchased this tree for my brother based on my own experience with the Contender Peach tree. This tree looks very healthy, pruned nicely, with good roots and better than 5/8" diameter. Very pleased with the purchase. Thanks, Stark Bros.
Ruth C on Mar 31, 2016
I have one of these trees already and had my first peaches last year. They taste amazing! So I had to get a second tree this year.
MARCY T on Mar 5, 2016
I live in Maine and I wanted a hardy peach tree. I have had great luck with Reliance peach trees but wanted to try a different variety.
Wendy W on Feb 23, 2016
Cold hardy
Michael M on Feb 21, 2016
supposed to be hardy in zone 4
Jessica P on Feb 20, 2016
Extension office recommendation for Arkansas
Kevin M on Feb 17, 2016
For my daughter.
GARY O on May 15, 2016
I purchased this tree for my brother based on my own experience with the Contender Peach tree. This tree looks very healthy, pruned nicely, with good roots and better than 5/8" diameter. Very pleased with the purchase. Thanks, Stark Bros.
Ruth C on Mar 31, 2016
Purchased and planted two contender peach trees this year, noticed the tag says Red leaf, does that mean something? Thank you!
Tasha on May 27, 2016
BEST ANSWER: That is likely the name of the root stock that the cultivar scion was grafted on to. Rutgers Red Leaf root stock offers a measure of disease resistance and dwarfing traits that protect the health of the plant and encourage bearing fruit earlier in the lifespan of the tree.
What kind of tree would I plant if I want a pollinator even though this self pollinates?
Karen B on May 13, 2016
BEST ANSWER: It really is self-fertile.I live in southern Zone 4, and this is one of the few trees that produces here, so I don't have a lot of peach options. But I got an excellent crop with two Contender trees, so you could just buy two.
Does the contender Peachtree bear fruit yearly?
Tikki on Jul 24, 2016
BEST ANSWER: Thank you for your question. Contender will take 2-4 years to bear, but with proper care and barring any extreme weather conditions/bud-kill due to a frost, it will bear fruit annually.

Customer Reviews

4.4 / 5.0
30 Reviews
5 Stars
4 Stars
3 Stars
2 Stars
1 Star
21
5
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1
Best zone 4 extreme cold peach, massive fruit production
I love the contender peach. I have planted it instead of the reliance peach at all of my rental properties and my remote mountaintop cabin, 5 trees total. It has withstood zone 4 winters year after year, extreme winds, 5 foot snows in a ski resort area, and bare bitter cold ground in January. Every spring it's covered with beautiful pink blossoms and in the summer or even the first season a little stick of a tree has 10 or 15 peaches. My 4 year old tree had hundreds of peaches. Tastes great when sun ripened and right as they hit the ground. It's my most heavy producing and fastest turnaround fruit tree in any of my permaculture zone 4 plantings.
May 6, 2016
Purchased
over 2 years ago
Contender Peach Review
I received the bare root dwarf peach tree in May 2014. I was not impressed as the tree was a single stalk approximately 1/2" diameter by 36" tall when planted. There were no protruding branches, just a straight stick.
I followed the planting instructions utilizing a generous sized hole, top soil mixed with composted manure and peat moss mulch. The tree liked that combination as it sprouted several branches and grew to approximately 5 ft that summer.
The tree wintered well and grew to approximately 12 ft the summer of 2015.
I did nothing for protection the winter of 2015-16 other than fencing to prevent deer damage.
This May (2016) the tree has in excess of 80 blossoms and looking healthy. I'm hoping for peaches this summer but question how well the pollination went due to the lack of bees. I tried pollinating several blossoms using an artist's brush. Only time will tell.
I have recommended the contender peach to several of my friends as the results so far have been impressive. Its hard to believe that it grew from a twig to a 12' tree in only 2 years.
May 4, 2016
Purchased
over 2 years ago
Third year fruit
The severe winter of 2013/14 killed all my Zone 5 peach trees here in southern Wisconsin. So in the spring of 2014 I replanted 2 each of Contender and Reliance to have an extended harvest period as there was *nothing* in my garden better than tree-ripened peaches. These had a few blossoms in the spring of 2015 which I removed. This spring all the trees are covered with blossoms so I will have to thin them. The Contender trees are now double the size of the Reliance.
May 9, 2016
Purchased
over 2 years ago
Excellent Eating
We have enjoyed many fresh peaches and frozen peaches from these two trees.
May 8, 2016
Purchased
5 months ago
It's been a year now
The little tree made it through our long and cold winter and is in flower as we speak. Thant's a good sign! It will be several years before it is large enough to bear fruit and not break...the only downside I can see at this time...the tree arrived very small...but it was healthy and looks great for how small it is!
May 10, 2016
Purchased
1 year ago
A real Contender!
The contender Peach I purchased in the Spring of 2014 is now producing so many fruits that I have recently taken about 30 for fear that the branches would not hold up to the weight. Good problem to have so soon. Hopefully, next time the tree produces, I can leave more fruit on the tree to ripen. Very happy!
June 1, 2016
Purchased
over 2 years ago
Contender Peach
The Contender Beach we purchased from you survived our brutal winter here on the south shore of lake superior and looks happy and healthy! THANKS!
June 2, 2016
Purchased
1 year ago
Should have bought Extra
Loved them so much, I realize I should have bought more of them. Also, buy the standard size, you'll kick yourself later that you didn't make the room for a larger tree that makes such excellent fruit. A sure backyard pleasure!
May 9, 2016
Purchased
over 2 years ago
Great Tree
I have had this tree one year now. I admit when I got the package and it Looked like a stick with some bare roots and damp paper wrapped around I was a little skeptical. I also ordered the starter kit with it and used the fertilizer for this and another tree until it was gone all last summer.

I'm happy to say this tree has done phenomenal! It is now more than twice the height of what was sticking out of the ground when I planted it and has many branches on it. I didn't expect anything out of it for a couple years, but this year there were three Blossoms on it, which look like they may grow into peaches.

Overall very happy with this tree and starter kit I used in planting it. It survived the 15 below themes this winter too.
May 24, 2016
Purchased
1 year ago
Contender Peach
I've tried Intrepid, Red Haven and Contender peach here in Southern Coastal Maine. They all thrive but as of now I prefer Contender.
May 23, 2016
Purchased
1 year ago