About 15 years ago, I was visiting a garden and greatly admired a large shrub that had narrow, reddish purple leaves. The generous creator of that garden told me it was a purple-leaved peach (Prunus persica) and that it came true from seed; then she dug up one of its seedlings for me to take home. It has been a gem for me since then, growing relatively slowly but looking better and better every year. Her long-established plant was maybe 8 to 10 feet tall; the seedling I brought home is now is about 6 feet tall and wide. The branching stems are packed with buds that pop open into pink flowers in mid spring (April here in southeastern PA). As they finish, deep red-purple new foliage emerges. The rich color usually lasts into summer; when it gets really hot, most of the foliage turns green with a purplish cast. For the rest of the growing season, it’s mostly a textural accent, as the long, slender leaves flutter in the breeze.
Hidden by the leaves, the fuzzy fruits develop through the summer, ripening in early fall. The small, freestone fruits have white flesh and a pretty good flavor: a nice bonus on a very ornamental shrub. I don’t spray, though, and most of the fruits on my plant have some insect damage, so I let most of them drop, transplanting or giving away the self-sown seedlings. This year, I collected some of the fruits, removed the pits, and then extracted the seeds. (That is a challenging, time-consuming process but greatly increases the germination success.) Note that the seeds, which resemble tiny almonds, are not edible. Full sun; average soil. Zones 5 to 9, probably.
2021-collected seeds sold out. I hope to collect again in September 2022. At least 6 seeds.
Please read the germination information as well before ordering.