US & Canada

First-date peach tree bears fruit for son

Rhys O'Neill's son gazing at a peach grown from the tree his dad bought for his mum on their first date Image copyright Rhys O'Neill
Image caption Rhys O'Neill's son was able to pick a peach from the tree his father bought for his mum on their first date

"The first time I visited my girlfriend at college I bought a peach tree from a local nursery and I told her someday we will eat peaches from it."

These were the words 30-year-old Rhys O'Neill, from Vermont, in the US, wrote in a Reddit post which received more than 100,000 upvotes.

"Well, it worked better than I planned. Here is our son eating a peach from that very tree", he added.

One Reddit user describes their story as a "fairy tale".

Image copyright Rhys O'Neill
Image caption Rhys O'Neill says this photo "is proof for all those hardcore Reddit users that my story is real"

"Some day we're going to eat peaches"

Rhys said he knew instantly he loved his girlfriend, Lindsy. In fact, when he bought the peach tree he already knew they would be eating the fruit from it together.

"Our first big date was at her college. I didn't know how to impress her," he told the BBC.

Rhys said he knew it took a long time for peaches to develop so if he bought the tree it would show her he was serious.

The then 21-year-old told Lindsy: "Some day we're going to eat peaches." She told her friends she would be marrying him.

Rhys planted the tree in front of his family's house in Vermont. That was eight years ago.

The pair currently live in that same house, although they have moved back and forth during their five years together.

Now they are married and have two children.

This summer is the first time the tree has produced peaches.

Rhys said his 19-month-old son loved eating the peach but had no idea of the significance of the tree.

"He loved it. He took bites out of it," said Rhys. "He threw a bit of it in his paddling pool."

Image copyright Rhys O'Neill
Image caption The peach tree stands in the garden of the family home

Love at first sight

Rhys said his Reddit post was his first ever on the social media site. "My brother can't believe it - my first post and I get 100,000 upvotes."

Although Rhys said the majority of comments in response had been positive, some people have called him "creepy" and "highly inappropriate".

But Rhys says: "I loved her very quickly, so the peach tree was appropriate. We just knew we were right for each other."

Texan-born Rhys said he'd "completely forgotten" about the tree for eight years.

"No one watered it. No one pruned it. It's been through Vermont winters."

"Yet somehow the peaches appeared this summer."

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Image copyright Rhys O'Neill
Image caption Rhys and Lindsy say they knew they were made for each other

Peaches reminded us of "the good stuff"

The fruit appeared at a very opportune moment for the couple, as they have a three-month-old baby girl and aren't getting much sleep.

"It helped us to remember the good stuff as we struggle with sleepless nights."

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