(July 30) A new peach variety that requires only 400 hours of chilling to flower and set fruit should give growers in the Southeastern lower coastal plain an edge and provide consumers with a more reliable supply of early summertime peaches.

The Gulfcrimson, developed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Agricultural Research Service in cooperation with the University of Georgia and the University of Florida, ripens from mid- to late May, according to a news release.

Light supplies should be available to consumers by 2011, and full crops by 2012.