Different species of quince

To go off on a tangent from the above previous thread, I just realized that there are very different species of quinces. Cydonia oblonga is the standard quince, but Hidden Springs Nursery in Tennessee, for example, carries a quince in the Chaenomeles genus which is apparently a shrub, not at all a tree. All they say about the fruit is that they are smaller than Cydonia oblonga. One random online reference said Chaenomeles fruit can be up to 2-1/2" in diameter, which sounds like a pretty decent size. Has anyone ever grown or eaten any Chaenomeles fruit from any variety selected particularly for its fruit? I’m wondering now if the person I got in touch with that’s growing quinces near Knoxville might have Chaenomeles, although he did describe his quinces as trees.

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Chaenomeles is known as flowering quince, the fruit I’ve seen produced are rock hard, fairly dry and sour as can be at 2" diameter. Still good as a source of pectin and acid for preserves, and hardier and less disease prone than cydonia o.
I have one from Oikos called Lemony, haven’t gotten fruit from it. Selected for fruit and growth habit. It is quite dwarfy, not getting much above 3’, and it is spreading root runners.
I’d be interested in other Chaenomeles that were selected for fruit rather than floral display, seems like a bomb proof plant. Great choice for an edible hedge!

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Jesse, do you think your experience would contradict or, on the other hand, might be compatible with the following things I’ve read online? “…they share the hard, sour character of tree quince. Like tree quince fruit, they also soften and develop fruity sweetness when cooked.” And: “they do soften and become less astringent after frost (when they are said to be ‘bletted’).”

Chaenomeles, commonly known as ‘flowering quince’ or ‘Japanese quince’, (at least in my locality) is a shrub, variably fruitful - my grandmother had a selection that fruited fairly heavily - hard-as-a rock, extremely sour, slightly musky smell/flavor… mellowing some if you allowed them to fully ripen to yellow… but I usually ate them green… They could be substituted for Cydonia in any quince marmalade, jelly, etc. recipe. ‘Toyo Nishiki’ has been reputed to be an especially fruitful selection.

There is also ‘Chinese quince’, Pseudocydonia sinensis, which is more tree-like in growth habit… I’ve seen it grown both as single and multiple-trunks… great red/orange fall color, interesting exfoliating bark reminiscent of crape myrtle or some of the eucalyptus; pink blossoms and large green fruit… mine never got a chance to fruit before the Polar Vortex of '13-14 took 'em out, but they look to be of a size to run 1-2lb/fruit… but I may be overestimating them.

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We have a flowering quince in our yard that never gets fireblight. From a fruit stand point it performs poorly. It blooms very early and usually gets hit by frost. The fruit that does survive is very small and always gets cedar apple rust. Our bush is in full bloom right now.

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My Grammy and my Aunt had tall bush ones and the short bush types. Unfortunately, I have no idea what varieties, but Grammy said hers were Chinese quinces. These were 12 feet tall or so, had softball sized pale green fruits with red dots and softened nicely when cooked. My Aunt had the dwarf Japanese ones, with sticky yellow fruits, kind of lumpy. these were sweeter, and a bit small to peel and bottle, so were used chopped for jam. I can’t speak to the fireblight as I moved away when I was 15 or so, and haven’t been back to have a good look since. I don’t remember anyproblems with those bushes, but as I said, I was a teen when we left.

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