When to Transplant
The best time to transplant peach trees is January. The trees are still dormant from the winter, which will reduce the shock of transplantation. It will also give the roots time to get established before the growing season. While January is ideal, peach trees can be transplanted in any winter month approximately six weeks before new growth begins.
Before you plant, inspect the peach tree for signs of leaf curl--it is a fungus that can eventually kill the tree. If this is a problem, apply a fungicide recommended for leaf curl.
What to Look For
Transplant peach trees when they are at least 1 year old and preferably not after they reach 3 years old. Older peach trees do not transplant well, and younger peach trees have not established a sufficient root system before one year to withstand transplantation.
Do not purchase peach trees to transplant if they have yellow or brown leaves. This indicates a possible fungus and the trees may fail to thrive.
Loosen the roots around the root ball to encourage new growth and plant the tree on the south side of your home. Peach trees are susceptible to cold and the structure will provide protection from harsh winter winds.
The best varieties for peach trees are Golden Jubilee, Carolina Gold and June Gold. June Gold is the best variety for eating fresh; Golden Jubilee is best for canning jams and jellies or whole fruit, and Carolina Gold is best for cooking.