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Korean pear
Korean pear

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Zones 2-12, 14-21, 32-41
Full Sun
Regular Water

Pear (Asian)

Asian pear
Deciduous, Edible fruit, Trees

These pears are descendants of two Asian species: Pyrus pyrifolia (P. serotina) and P. ussuriensis. Trees grow to 25–30 ft. tall and about half as wide, but they–re easily kept to half that size with pruning. These are quite beautiful trees, and would likely be grown as ornamentals even if they didn–t bear fruit.

Unlike European pears, Asian pears are generally round in shape, with a crisp, faintly gritty, firm to hard texture. Asian pears are often called apple pears because of their roundness and crispness, but they are not hybrids of those two fruits. All pears benefit from pollination by a second variety that flowers at the same time (consult your local nursery). European pears, however, are not reliable pollenizers for Asian types because they generally bloom later. Asian pears should be thinned to one pear per fruiting spur and should be picked ripe.

Fresh Asian pears are excellent combined with other fruits and vegetables in salads.

They need the same general culture as European pears but have a lower chilling requirement (take as few as 400 hours) and a greater resistance to fireblight. Asian pear varieties include –Chojuro–, –Hosui–, –Ichiban–, –Kikusui–, –Kosui–, –Mishirasu–, –Seuri–, –Shinko–, –Tsu Li–, –Ya Li–, –Yoinashi–, and –Yongi–. –Shinseiki– is self-fruitful, and can grow in low desert. –Nijisseki– (–Twentieth Century–) is a particularly cold-hardy variety.

'Hosui' Asian pears, photo courtesy of Kimberley Navabpour
'Hosui' Asian pears, photo courtesy of Kimberley Navabpour

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'Hosui' Asian pear

Large fruit with bronzy orange, russeted skin and outstanding flavor. Verysusceptible to fireblight. Earlymidseason.

'Korean Giant' Asian pear

Extra-large, russeted,olive green fruit weighing upto a pound. Keeps in cool (butunrefrigerated) storage formonths. Vigorous and cold-hardy. Late.

'Mishirasu' Asian pear

Very large fruit with russeted skin and good, crisp flavor; some may weigh over a pound. Very productive. Late midseason.

'Nijisseki' Asian pear, 'Twentieth Century' Asian pear

Small, round, yellow fruitwith white, juicy, sweet, crispflesh and excellent flavor.Stores well. Self-fruitful.Midseason.

'Yoinashi' Asian pear

Medium to large, brown-speckled pear with sweet, crisp flesh that has a hint of butterscotch flavor. Vigorous;resists bacterial infection. Late midseason.

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