I’ve had zero issues grafting onto Callery rootstock with either Asian or European pear. They are vigorous, grow rapidly, and push healthy top growth.
The best thing about callery is the price. Something very valuable 100% free. Finding wild trees and grafting them over is an investment in the future. Most people think it takes a lot of money to grow food. Callery when sold are valued at around $1 each.
And, planting seeds is an option … just takes a little more patience.
As an update the newer callery i see now are pretty much compatible with most everything. The old types that grew here were very different.
They are acclimated somewhat now to Kansas.The longer callery cross with other pears the more genetics that benefit them they pick up. As they adapt they have made it to the states unwanted species list. That is primarily because of what they have done in other states. Have moved to using BET and ohxf rootstocks only myself. Keep in mind nearly every pear out there sold in the last 25+ years is likely growing on callery roots.
I know of a roadside tree that produces 1 inch diameter fruit. I’m fairly certain it is a callery cross. It has an interesting trait where the leaves have a “notch” on one side. It also appears to have potential as a rootstock. I’m trialing a few grafts to see how it performs. I’ve seen a post where you mentioned finding a callery that produced fairly large fruit. Is the tree accessible? If so, you might consider getting seed for rootstock. 34.6015059400835, -85.99246776195295 will pinpoint the tree on google maps.
Several wild callery produce large fruit. The next step in pear rootstocks is clearly callery or gmo - #4 by Bear_with_me . I’m not pursuing it further at this time. Yes they are accessible.
I have a Bradford pear and a Cleveland pear here. I grafted red Bartlett and two Asian varieties to the Bradford pear. Every time the Bartlett pears would start to leaf out the leaves were eaten by caterpillars and other insects. The Asian pears are doing much better. Next year I will do some serious grafting to that tree. It was starting to split in the middle so I ran a threaded rod through it to to save it. Part of the problem aside from bark inclusion is it was never pruned and is very heavy on the south side. So when I cut it back next year in preparation for grafting I will kill two birds with one stone.
The Cleveland pear shows signs of fireblight. I grafted a fruiting pear scion to it but it needs some serious pruning to take out the fireblight.
I was pretty shocked to read all this hatred some people have about callery/Bradford pear. Some localities even passed laws against it as if that’s the most important problem in the world.
Yes in my area they speak of non native trees like callery. The truth is very few trees if any are native. The native americans burned it all off to attract the buffalo. Elms, mulberry, etc. are imports as well and i wished they declared war on elms. In my case i purchase Bet rootstocks or ohxf.
In Europe pear wood is very valuable and from what I have read callery pear wood is even better. I just don’t see the harm they are causing because they mainly colonize areas that have been cleared of trees by people like farms, etc. They don’t do well in heavily forested areas.
Perhaps that is true in the eastern U.S. 25 years ago in California I had retail inventory of a dozen each of 8 pear cultivars. None of my suppliers used callery rootstock.
Thats true callery become a problem for people owning unattended land.
The trees that did best in Kansas are on callery. Gurneys used some callery that sprout profusely at the base. Have no idea what type it is i never saw it before. That is what they put asian pears on. The trees have done well but the shoots must be removed. I can’t complain they did not charge much then.
Earlier in this thread you said you were having problems with OHxF rootstocks…are they faring better now? We grafted onto several callery seedlings in our pasture (we have neighbors with Bradford pears), and got rid of the others.
Ohxf are not perfect rootstock for my location. Callery or BET do better long term.
We had a real problem with BET rootstocks being very puny when they arrived for three years in a row, and many of them dying, even with watering. The ones that DIDN’T die, are now super-vigorous. But that’s why we’ve ended up with a whole lot more OHxF rootstocks. I’m sorry to hear that long-term they don’t do well (NE Kansas). Bummer, since that’s what we mostly have.
The problem is long term with ohxf is during droughts here they dont fruit, voles and deer like them. I have over a hundred myself but it takes extra work. Every rootstock has some drawbacks.
Bummer. We’ve had no problems with deer (a fearsome farm dog takes care of that), and so far mowing in the late fall has kept the voles away (fingers crossed), but drought. …yeah… oh well.
There is nothing wrong with ohxf as long as you calculate in the problems that can come up. They are overall good rootstocks. They may not be the best for me at this location. BET like you said can be hard to establish when they are small and are very vigorous once established. Callery are an ideal rootstock which is why Kansas declared war on them. They do to well here. The knew callery keep picking up new genetics all the time. The last ones i grafted over were very easy to graft. They were nothing like the old ones that were very difficult to graft.
Interesting, I hadn’t thought of that. You’re right, of course. I’m seeing more variation in size of the fruit on feral one’s than in years past.
This thread is worth reading The next step in pear rootstocks is clearly callery or gmo
For dwarfing European trees on betulafolia… I’ve got an idea.
What if, you were growing a modified central leader tree, and the trunk of the tree, and maybe necessarily the first branch were Asian pear to make the tree dwarf from being precocious, and then the top were whatever European pear you wanted?
I bet that would work!
Also it could be Callery or a different extremely vigorous rootstock, dwarfing, precocious, good anchorage, sounds like a win win!