Peach is a fruity fragrance note added to perfumes and the household name of the fruit of the Prunus persica tree.
Round shaped and with a cleft down the middle, the peach is an aromatic fruit with a soft and fuzzy exterior, which gets more and more tender as it ripens. The edible peel reveals a deliciously sweet and lush interior with yellowish flesh and a hard pit in the middle.
Planted in fall, the pit will germinate and transform itself into a young peach tree sometime in spring. The tree takes two to four years to yield its first fruit and, compared to other trees, has a relatively short life of 12 years.
It’s poetic, in a way, that the very tree whose fruit symbolizes eternal youth in more than one mythology is also one that dies young.
According to Clemson University’s College of Agriculture, Forestry, and Life Sciences, peaches originated in Northwest China, where they’ve been cultivated as garden fruits for nearly 4,000 years.
Chinese mythology paints peaches as divine fruits eaten by the gods, symbols for long life in good health. Peachwood, on the other hand, is said to have protective powers against evil spirits.
That’s why, in Ancient China, peachwood was turned into symbols and figurines that were put up on the entrances of public buildings and hung on the doors of private homes to promote calm and tranquility.
Peaches made their way to the present-day territory of Europe after Alexander the Great, king of the ancient Greek kingdom of Macedon, defeated Persia in the epic Battle of the Persian Gate, bringing the fragrant fruit back to Ancient Greece as a botanical trophy.
Arab perfumers used to extract essential oil from the peach kernel and for their oriental scents and fragrant lotions.
Modern-day perfumers rely on synthetic molecules, like gamma-dodecalactone (metallic peachy), delta-dodecalactone (milky peachy), and others, to add a peachy note to their fragrances.
The scent of peach can be described as tenderly and innocently sweet. From your first whiff, it brings back memories of careless summers in your youth, when life was nothing but awe, love, and exploration.
Depending on where it’s extracted or synthesized from—and how it’s paired with a fragrance’s remaining notes—peach can come off as sugary and powdery, or savory and juicy.