Asian pears: eating and growing. Experiences and thoughts, please

I like Asian pears. Growing up, they were the only kind of pears I knew. Now, I like both Asian and Euro pears.

Although many of us like Asian pears, there are others who have not tried them and are not sure if they would like to grow or even eat them.

I hope we share input, experience and exchange ideas and views about Asian pears esp. the ones growing in your yard.


This was my Hosui, picked today. Brix is 14 but it was sweet, sweeter than 20th century with the typical Asian pear crunch. It has fruited for three years but the last two years, the pears were small and bland.

I am happy that I gave it a chance. It tasted very good, just a notch below Korean Giant. Definitely better than 20th Century, in my opinion.


We had one of our hottest summers this year, and I had a Shinseiki that hit 16 brix from a second leaf tree. Most were about 15. Kosuis were about the same. Very refreshing and crunchy. I wish I knew if they were going to be this good every year. If so, I’d plant a few more trees. I like them best near the center, where they have just a bit of acidity

Thanks for your input. Quite a few people have spoken well about Shinseiki. I need to look for the scionwood.

Our hot and dry weather would have been perfect for peaches and plums that I did not have this year. For the past couple of weeks, we have had a few days of rain. Not sure it mattered to my Hosui but it definitely matters to my figs.

I also wanting to grow more pears, Asian and Euro. In my yard, they are far less work than stone fruit.

My third leaf Shinseiki put out about 15 pears for the first time (one last year). I had not sprayed thinking it was too early, and I was surprised that most pears were unblemished. A Sansa apple 12 yards away was peppered. Small fruit but very good, and I expect it to become bigger. I was against asian pears originally (my collaborator wanted them) but now I am a fan. They are the easiest pome trees, two of my pears have also put out first fruits (to be picked tomorrow), but this tree appears to be vigorous and completely disease free. A good candidate for organic management.


Glad to hear your Hosui perform well for you.
I have Hosui too but it ripens between early to mid August for me while the weather is still hot. By hot I mean high’s around low 90’s on some days. If I were to have a crunchy Hosui, I need to pick when there is still some green color on it even though it’s still not at its sweetest. If I were to wait till the whole pear turn brown, it would not be crunchy anymore though very sweet. I blame it on the temperature but really don’t understand it because low 90’s are not supposed to be that hot for pear. At least it does not affect 20th Century which ripens around the same time.

Unfortunately 20th Century has never been my favorite because it’s not sweet enough. I have just grafted Shinseiki on my tree a few months back. If the shoot continue to stay healthy and not attacked by FB, I can send you scionwood in winter.

Another variety you might want to try is Ichiban. It ripens about 2 weeks earlier than Hosui/20th Century in my area which is kind of nice to have around to stretch the pear season.

I agree, if you don’t consider thinning and bagging as work. For some reason, squirrels do not seem to bother them most years. They would rather attack my Jiro persimmons which are not even close to ripe and most are still completely green.

Sorry to hear about the disappointing result of you Hosui. It did not impress me at all the first two years. My favorite is still Korean Giant.

Thanks for the offer of Shinseiki scionwood. If you want KG scionwood, let me know.

Do you grow Ichiban or have eaten it? I wonder who among us here grows this variety. Maybe, @tonyOmahaz5 ?

I like the name. To be named number one, it should be good :smile:

My squirrels are not choosey. They eat anything in my yard from blueberries ( when I grew them) to cherries, peaches, plums, pears, apples, you name it. They don’t know yet I have figs and jujubes

Ichiban is another variety I grafted a couple of years ago. To me, it’s just another brown Asian pear, definitely sweeter than 20th Century. I don’t know if Hosui or Ichiban is sweeter as I didn’t have both on hand at the same time and I don’t use refractometer.

I should have Ichiban scionwood to send you too, plus a couple more other varieties which have not borne fruit for me. I’ll take stock of what I have when the time comes and let you know.

I don’t need KG as I have it too. If you’ll have some fig cuttings, I might be interested. I still have a lot to learn about rooting fig cuttings. So far my success rate is kind of low. We’ll see when the time comes if I have not given up yet.

My squirrels probably have not found my fig plants yet which are planted in pots placed close to the house. They seldom venture there.

Z9. Thank you very much for the scionwood offer. I will PM you after the New Year.

As for figs, I definitely have Chicago hardy for you. I will see if other varieties are big enough for cuttings. In your zone, I would wait for soil to warm up and sitck cuttings right in ground. It should work well for you.

Drippin Honey are very good Asian pears. They are sweet, crisp, and relatively hardy. If I recommended a variety it would be them! Korean Giant seems to be a stronger grower at my location. I have not tasted KG yet but they seem like they will be very good.

This year everything seems to ripen almost two weeks earlier. My KG could be ready before the end of Sept instead of some time in Oct.

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Thanks! I’d better continue to improve on my cutting rooting skill.

I didn’t have such good KG this year, not sure why. I had too much rot and the ones I did have were not consistently flavorful. Last year they were really good.

Drippin Honey was fine, but they were extremely popular with the hornets due to being very soft-skinned (and soft in general). They have a somewhat different taste than the other asians which is nice, but I prefer the more strongly flavored ones.

Kosui was probably my favorite this year, it has been very reliable and very flavorful year after year.

Meigetsu I got a few nice pears from. They are good keepers with a nice butterscotch flavor when fully ripe.

Shin-Li are just starting to ripen now, I like how they are really late. They are more mild-flavored and keep really well.

First real harvest of Asian pears, Korean Giant. I did not thin well so too many smaller ones.


Nice looking pears Mamuang!

@clarkinks, thank you.

This is the first year I bagged KG pears because They were damaged a great deal by BMSB last year.

I chose the wrong year to bag. We had a drought. It was hot and dry in the summer. I could see that many pears in the bags turned orange color in the intense heat. I fear they would be cooked inside the bags so about 3 weeks ago, I took most bags out.

The pears with darker orange color sustained heat damage. That area ( faced the sun) became soft and leathery. It tasted that way, too, instead of crunchy.


Your KG is almost a pound a piece, I’m so looking forward to some from my trees!

This year, I have very sizable Hosui and 20th Century but Shinko is rather small due to my bad thinning! I think I like the 20th Century more due to its sweetness and juiciness, combines with thin skin. I’ll have some Shinseiki woods too if you need more.


Our pears were just planted this year, so we obviously won’t have any of our own for a few years. But we did try some AP’s at the orchard we’ve visited recently. The Kosui they had were very bland and almost mealy, not a pleasant experience. They also had Korean Giant, and those had better pear flavor than the Kosui, but they were pretty gritty. Is that the norm for a KG?

KG that I have had are not gritty. They are sweet, juicy and crunchy. The ones we ate this evening had the brix of 17 but I am not sure if my reflectometer was working correctly :smile:

@tomIL, I definitely will ask for your Shinseiki scoinwood this winter.

From what you and Subdood said about those varieties, it makes me think that Asian pears’s quality differ so much from one climate to another.

One factor I believe, contributes to its quality is the age of the tree. My first two years of Hosui fruiting was awful, bland and small. This year Hosui is very good, better than 20th Century.