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Pear trees and planting


Pear trees and plantingYoung, thrifty trees about two years from the bud are the best for planting. Pears axe generally placed 16 by 16 or 20 by 20 feet apart, according to the form and size of the varieties. Pears bear paying crops younger than apples. This quality, however, varies much with the different kinds.

Pruning pear trees - Pears need more pruning than apples when young. During the first few years after plantmg the central shoots that usually seem to attract all the growth should be pinched or short­ened, except the one central shoot, which should be preserved through the, life of the tree. Proper attention to this training trees are young will develop a head that will need but little tramng when the tree is mature.

Thinning the pear fruit - It is a great mistake to allow pear trees to overbear, when the fruit is about an inch in diameter the trees should be gone over carefully and all the surplus pears, over and above what the tree can mature properly, picked off. Each branch should be examined, and, with the size of the mature fruit in mind, the number reduced to the proper amount for that size of brancr All imperfect, wormy, or distorted specimens should be picked off first, and only those which are expected to make fancy fruit left behind. Unfortunately, no general rule can be given to guide in thinning pears.

The rule of one fruit to 6 inches which commonly ides the peach grower in thinning peaches, can not be definitely applied to pears. Experience is the only guide, and the grower may expect to allow a few trees to overbear before he learns the lesson of just how much to thin. Thinning not only improves the quality of the fruit of the current season, but it places the tree in better shape to bear the next year. As a rule, greater profits are secured by regular annual crops than by heavy crops during occasional years, for it commonly happens that such seasons are the very ones when fruit is"plentiful and cheap and the profit in handling it very small.

Pear fruit - The fruit varies greatly in quality. Some varieties are only valuable for cooking, and others are of finest dessert quality. In color pears vary from a beautiful yellow with pink cheek to dark, rough, deep-brown russet. In form they vary from globular through a great variety of shapes to the typical pear shape. In season of ripening they range from early summer to kinds that will keep in an ordinary cellar until March. The fruit should be protected, and should be picked when full grown even if very hard, as it is improved by being ripened under cover. Some varieties that water core badly on the trees are exempt from it when ripened under cover. They are on the market as fresh fruit, dried, or canned, and are used for making pear cider which is known as "perry," varieties.

From the standpoint of the commercial orchardist and for cultural purposes pears may be divided into three groups: Dwarf, standard, and Oriental. The dwarf pear consists mainly of European varieties propagated on the quince root, the principal stock used for this purpose being rooted, cuttings of a vigorous variety called the An giers. The trees so propagated are dwarfed in habit, and are usually very productive and precocious in bearing.

In case of certain varieties, conspicuously the Angouleme, the fruit is improved both in quality and quantity. On the other hand, the quality of the Seckel is not so good on the quince. Occasionally we have the anomaly of a pear growing naturally as a dwarf when propagated on the pear root, an example of this being the Japan Golden Russet; but ordinarily speaking, the dwarf pear means the pear on the quince root.

The second class, standards, consists of the European varieties propagated on the pear root. The stocks for this purpose may be either European pear seedlings, Japan pear seedlings-, or rooted cuttings of some of the Oriental pears. The third group, Orientals, comprises those pears which are partly or wholly of Chinese or Japanese origin. Only a small part of the commercial plantings are pure Oriental pears. Most of the important commercial varieties in this group are half­and-half hybrids between the Oriental and the European pears.

The Oriental blood, however, which is in them gives them such a strong constitution and makes them such vigorous growers that they stand out very distinctly from the European tribe. In all orchard considerations these three types of pears must be kept continually in mind, as their requirements are usually quite different.