Peach (Prunus persica [L.] Batsch) is widely cultivated due to its easy adaptability to different ecological conditions, early fruit set and a long period of harvest. Peach cultivation extends along 30–45° North and South parallels of latitude. Around 21,638,953 tons of peaches are produced in an area of 1538,174 ha across the world. Turkey ranks sixth with a production of 637,573 tons/year in 29,092 ha area. Early fruiting habit and correlative characteristics of peaches encouraged fruit breeders to study on this fruit species. The main aims of the study are new cultivar or rootstock breeding, resistance to diseases, late ripening season, fruit quality improvement, fruit shape changes, new tree shapes, and low chilling cultivars. Breeding studies have been carried out at the Department of Horticulture at the University of Cukurova since 1990s. In these, peach and nectarine breeding programs with different aims such as late ripening, quality improvement, Sharka resistance, and low chilling cultivars were studied. In this chapter, some of the results on late ripening peach and nectarine breeding program have also been presented.
Part of the book: Breeding and Health Benefits of Fruit and Nut Crops