Logo   (since 1999)


Home   |   FOOD ARTICLES   |   Food Trivia   |   Today_in_Food_History   |   Food_History_Timeline   |   Recipes   |   Cooking_Tips   |   Food_Videos   |   Food_Quotes   |   Who’s_Who   |   Culinary_Schools_&_Tours   |   Food_Trivia_Quizzes   |   Food_Poems   |   Free_Magazines   |   Food_Festivals_and_Events

Food Articles, News & Features Section

 You are here > Home > Food Articles

FRUIT 'M' to 'Z' >  Nectarines


FREE Magazines
and other Publications

Free Professional and Technical Research, White Papers, Case Studies, Magazines, and eBooks




NECTARINES, Facts & History

See also: Nectarine, Fruit of the Month  -  Trivia  -  Nectarine Quotes


A nectarine (Prunus persica variety nectarina) is a fuzzless variety of peach. It is NOT a cross between a peach  and a plum. Fuzziness is a dominant trait of peaches. Occasionally when peach trees are crossed or even self pollinated they will produce some fruit whose seeds will grow into nectarine trees and others which will be peach trees. Nectarines will sometimes appear on peach trees, and peaches sometimes appear on nectarine  trees!

It is impossible to tell which seeds from nectarine trees will produce  nectarine bearing trees, so commercial growers take branches which produce nectarines and graft them onto peach trees. The branches will continue to produce nectarines.

In appearance, nectarine trees are the same as peach trees, and are virtually  indistinguishable from one another. Tree size and shape, leaves, and even buds  look the same. Nectarines, however, are smaller and smooth skinned (looking more  like plums), golden yellow with large blushes of red (ripe fruit looks the same as unripe - the color does not change significantly, but they do get sweeter and  softer). Their yellow flesh has a noticeable pink tinge, with a distinct aroma and a more pronounced flavor. There are over 100 varieties of nectarine, both freestone and clingstone varieties, the same as for peaches. (Freestones flesh  separates from the 'pit' easily, while clingstones cling to the 'pit'). Nectarines are more delicate than peaches, bruising very easily.

Nectarines, like peaches, probably originated in China over 2,000 years ago  and were cultivated in ancient Persia, Greece and Rome. They were grown in Great Britain in the late 16th or early 17th centuries, and were introduced to America by the Spanish.

The word 'nectarine' means sweet as nectar, and this is very likely the  obvious origin of the name.

Today, California grows over 95% of the nectarines produced in the United  States.

Nectarines are cultivated the same as peaches, and are generally available from June to late September. The yield from trees is significantly reduced during the harvesting, handling and shipping because of their tender skin.


Look for: Ripe nectarines vary in color from greenish yellow to mostly reddish with yellow background. Do not choose the redder ones thinking they are more ripe. Ripe fruit are fragrant and give, slightly, to the touch. If they are a little under-ripe, leave them at room temperature for 2-3 days to ripen.

Avoid: Avoid fruit soft spots, wrinkled or punctured skin.

Storage: Nectarines will keep in the coldest part of your  refrigerator for 5 days at most. Store in a plastic bag.

Nectarines can be eaten out of hand just like peaches, and can be used in any  way you would peaches.

They are low in calories (and like most fruit - no sodium or cholesterol). They are a good source of vitamins A and C, beta-carotene and potassium.



  FRUIT 'M' to 'Z'   |   Mango   |   Melons   |   Nectarines, Fruit of the Month   |   Nectarines   |   Oranges, Selection, Storage, etc  |   Papaya   |   Pawpaw (Papaw)   |   Passion Fruit   |   Peaches   |   Peaches: Just Peachy   |   Pears   |   Pears, Delicious, Delectable   |   Pear Season   |   Pepino Melon   |   Persimmons   |   Pineapples   |   Pineapple, The MD2 Pineapple   |   Plums   |   Pluots and Apriums   |   Pomegranates, Tips & Usage   |   Pomegranates, Facts & Recipe   |   Pomegranate, Wonderful Variety   |   Quince   |   Quince Recipes   |   Sapote   |   Star Fruit (Averrhoa carambola)   |   Strawberies   |   Tropical Fruits and Vegetables   |   UGLI Fruit   |   Watermelon: American Favorite   |   Watermelon History & Facts  

Go to Top of Page

  Home   |   About Us & Contact Us   |   Chef James Bio   |   Bibliography   |   Cooking Contests   |   Other Links  

Please feel free to link to any pages of from your website.
For permission to use any of this content please E-mail:
All contents are copyright © 1990 - 2024 James T. Ehler and unless otherwise noted.  All rights reserved.
You may copy and use portions of this website for non-commercial, personal use only.
Any other use of these materials without prior written authorization is not very nice and violates the copyright.
Please take the time to request permission.