Asian pear trees recommended for the northwest
Swansons selects Asian pear tree varieties which perform well in our unique climate. This information sheet provides you with a list of varieties recommended and usually offered by Swansons. Varieties are subject to change, so please call for current availibility. For more detailed information on any Asian pear variety, please refer to individual plant signs or consult one of our nursery professionals.
CHOOSING THE PLANTS
Choose varieties from our recommended list according to flavor, use, and pollination requirements. In Western Washington Asian pears ripen late August to Mid-October depending on the variety and environmental conditions. Asian pear trees are grafted onto specific rootstocks that affect the growth rate and eventual height the tree will become. The tree varieties we carry are on a semi dwarfing rootstock.
Pollination of Asian pears is mostly performed by bees. All Asian pear varieties require cross-pollination from a different pear variety, and not all pear varieties can be counted on as adequate pollinators. Therefore, it is necessary to either plant two different and compatible kinds of Asian pears in close proximity to each other to cross-pollinate, or to plant an Asian pear tree that has multiple compatible varieties grafted on to the tree (called combo trees). See the following chart illustrating cross-pollination compatibility of the Asian pears varieties we offer.
COMBO ASIAN PEARS
Combo Asian pears are trees that have been both grafted onto semi-dwarf rootstock (Provence Quince) and have had multiple varieties of Asian pears grafted onto the main trunk. Therefore, they are semi-dwarf growing trees that produce multiple varieties of Asian pears on each tree. Our combo Asian pears are available either as a common growing upright tree, or already trained in an espalier style. Espalier is a training system that creates a flat growing tree that is perfect up against fences or walls.
Each Combo Asian Pear tree has at least 4 of the following varieties grafted onto it.
Hosui / Kikisui / Nijisseiki (20th Century) / Shinko / Shinseiki
Each Espalier Combo Pear has the following varieties grafted onto it.
Shinko / Shinseiki
Medium-sized, golden rosey brown fruit are sweet, crisp and juicy with complex subtle flavor. Fruit should be picked when ripe beginning in mid-September. Stores for a few months. Trees bear well at early age. Pollinized by any other Asian pear variety on this list.
A relatively new variety that is considered a new generation of Asian Pears. Medium to large size round fruit with rich, juicy, very sweet and distinctive flavor. It’s good for fresh eating and drying. The greenish skin yields easily to flesh that is firm and crisp. Ripens in late September. Pollinized by any other Asian pear variety on this list.
NIJISSEIKI (20th Century)
Huge yields of very large green fruit. It’s sweet, delicious and crisp . Good eaten fresh or dried. It ripens in October and also stores very well into March. Pollinized by any other Asian pear variety on this list.
One of the best storing of the Asian pear varieties. Medium to large size fruit with rich, juicy, very sweet and distinctive flavor, good for fresh eating and drying. Yellow-white flesh is firm and crisp. Ripens in mid-October. Pollinized by any other Asian pear variety on this list.
An Asian pear with medium to large, yellow fruit having white, crisp, sweet and juicy flesh. Fruit should be picked when ripe in late September. Stores well. Trees bear heavily and reliably. Pollinized by any other Asian pear variety on this list.