Mini Orchard

Grafted 5 in 1 Asian PearsThis year we are trying to grow a mini orchard.  We don’t have a large backyard, so we may have to do lots of pruning to keep them in check and also plant more dwarf varieties.

One of the first tree to go into our backyard orchard is this 5-n-1 Asian Pear tree.   It was a bare root tree planted back in February 2014.  We found it at Lowe’s for $23, which I think is a great price.  Considering that grafted trees once sold in gallon containers can fetch twice as much.

Grafted 5 in 1 Asian Pears

It’s called “pear apple” but it is not a cross between the two. It’s actually a descendant of two Asian species of pear.  According to the tags provided by Pacific Grove Nursery the 5 varieties include:

2oth Century, Chojuro, Shinskeiki, Hosui and Comice

“In the San Joaquin and Sacramento Valleys of California, these early blooming cultivars are in full bloom by early to mid-March. They are the first pears to bloom and are most subject to frost damage.

The earliest flowering Japanese cultivar is ‘Chojuro’ which flowers at the same time as ‘Anjou’ or ‘Winter Nelis’. Late-flowering Japanese cultivars are ’20th Century’ and ‘Okusankichi’ which reach full bloom with ‘Bartlett’. Most years the last third or half of ‘Chojuro’ bloom overlaps the first third or half of ’20th Century bloom.

In many pear areas outside California, Asian pear trees are grown as central leaders similar to apple tree training. This is done with little or no heading of the tree and selecting wide angle limbs for framework limbs off the central leader. The final tree looks like a Christmas tree in shape.” – Purdue University

Ripening of Asian Pears:
Shinseiki — mid July to mid August
Hosui — August

Note:  As much as I like to support our local nursery, their prices were just beyond my budget. For example, persimmon and avocado trees were being sold at starting prices of $50 and up.  I found that Lowe’s has a great selection of affordable fruit trees.  Especially if you are buying bare root trees. Lowe’s even has exotic trees for sale.  Including mango, guavas, dragonfruit, Goji berries, and much more!  But I am just going to grow the ones that I think will grow best in our area, which is zone 9.  Other great deals on fruit trees can be found at Costco.

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