Unusual & Old Fashioned Fruit Trees


Asian Pear - Pyrus Serotina or Nashi

Asian Pears go under several names including, Chinese Pear, Japanese Pear, Sand Pear and Apple Pear. Related to the European Pear, but totally different in texture and flavour they are often likened more to an apple not least because of their often round shape, pale yellow colour and crisp flesh. English pears have granular flesh and go softer the riper they get, whereas Asian Pears stay crisp until they rot.

Trees are hardy in the UK, but the flowers come early in Spring and as with many other fruit trees require some frost protection to prevent blossom damage. Disease resistance is fairly poor which may be another reason for their lack of popularity, although new varieties are always under development because of the huge Japanese and American market for them. Hundreds of thousands of tons of Asian Pears are grown in Japan and hundreds of acres are constantly being planted in America as well as plantations being made in France and New Zealand.

As with most commercially grown fruit trees, Asian Pears are grown on a rootstock for added strength and vigour, but they are still susceptible to pretty much the same pest and disease problems as English Pears with Canker, Fire Blight, Crown Rot, Black Spot, Scab and the ever popular Codling Moth all being included.

Asian Pears are partially self fertile, but for a good crop to be assured they need another pollinator such as the traditional English Pear, so when planting a couple of ordinary pear trees, why not try something a bit more challenging and plant an Asian Pear to keep them company and give a totally different and unusual fruit.

Although widely grown the World over they only recently seem to be gaining a foothold in Great Britain with Supermarkets starting to sell the fruit and a few trees being sold in Garden Centres, so you may have to hunt around to find a specimen for sale.

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