Alaska Pioneer Fruit Growers Association

ASIAN PEARS

August 28, 1991

Below is a description of some Asian pear varieties that could be worth trying to graft onto Pyrus ussuriensis. Northwoods Nursery lists the ‘Ya-li’ as not ripening until mid October, but perhaps some of the others ripen sooner. I have not seen any of the other varieties listed in any catalogs.

—Leslie Toombs

 

“From colder growing regions of the Orient come the so-called “Chinese varieties” of Asian pears, which are complex hybrids of-the ussurian pear (Pyrus ussuriensis), the Chinese white pear (P. Bretschneideris), and perhaps other Asian pear species. The ussurian pear grows in regions of northern China where temperatures can drop down to -62F!

 

The pure species generally does not produce high-quality fruit – they usually are juicy with a good balance of tartness and sweetness, but lack aroma and have many stone [grit] cells. Hybrids with the Chinese white pear and other species produce fruits that are crisp, sweet and juicy with few stone cells. ‘Ya-li’, Shi-hua-li’, ‘Laiyangtz-li’ and ‘Dong-guo-ii’ are some good-tasting cultivars. Many Chinese varieties of Asian pears are pear-shaped [others are apple-shaped].

 

Some sources of Asian pear:

 

Bear Creek Nursery

P.O. Box 411

Northport, WA 99157

 

Greer Gardens

1280 Goodpasture Island Rd.

Eugene, OR 97401

 

Northwoods Nursery

28696 South Cramer Rd.

Molalla, OR 97038

 

Pacific Tree Farms

4301 Lynwood Drive

Chula Vista, CA 92010

 

Raintree Nursery

391 Butts Rd

Morton, WA 98356

 

Article excerpted from “Grow (A ton of) Asian Pears, Lee Reich. Organic Gardening. May/June 1991.