The real Tenn pear is ready to bloom heavy this year. This one was sent to me by Corvallis. Be prepared to wait on this one in my area it takes many years. It’s growth habit is similar to ayers. Today is April 9th. Ayers is about at the same stage as tenn but a little behind it.
This is one of the most mislabeled and misidentified pears there is but Tenn is only known as Tennessee Properly Identifying the Tenn. AYRES Pear . The problem is like many pears the people identifying these don’t know the difference because they don’t grow them. Corvallis is the most reliable source only equaled by Dr. Natelson himself.
Just in case you want to know more
Breeder(s): Brooks D. Drain, Tennessee Agricultural Experiment Station.
Rootstocks used: OHxF #513
Orchards grown in: Pittsboro, NC orchard B.
Fruit quality: Flavor is tart, unusual for a pear, but balanced by sweetness. Texture is firm, but not crisp with smooth, grit-free juicy flesh. Good overall.
Fruit size: Small-medium. 120 g/fruit according to the University of Florida
Fruit appearance: Dull red blush over a greyish-green background. Skin is smooth.
Culinary characteristics: Its unusual tartness makes me wonder if it might be good for desserts. The tartness coupled with the juiciness suggests it might make an excellent blended perry, however both of these musings have not been tested by me or anyone else I’ve talked to.
Storage characteristics: Stores for at least 4 weeks in common refrigeration.
Harvest season: Mid-season (early September in northern Florida). Unfortunately, it comes up against several better pears (for fresh eating); Early-mid-September in Pittsboro, NC.
Bloom season: Early; a few days *** vs Spalding
Diseases: Resistant to fireblight. Susceptible to pear blister mite. Somewhat resistant to pear leafspot.
Precocity: Like most Asian/European hybrid pears, it is precocious; first fruit set in *** year on OHxF 513 rootstock.
Productivity: Very productive, but with a tendency for biennial bearing. It is very important to thin these trees early an vigorously in the “on” years to ensure good annual crops.
Growth habit: Very vigorous; crotch angles quite narrow when the trees are young- be sure to spread the limbs while they are small and limber. Use the most dwarfing rootstock you can find. Really, OHxF #513 is not dwarfing enough."SE Pears
Looks like tenn will have some fruit this year.
I got Tenn from Ethan Natelson about 20 years ago (we go way back to NAFEX and SFF days together). It never did well in Sebastopol, CA grafted on OHxF 97. Fruit was not worth eating and the tree went into decline - ? reason. I finally removed it.
My first experience with it was in MS where it grew well but was not a favorite eating pear. That scion actually came to me with the Tenn experimental number. Unfortunately, I no longer have those records and don’t remember anything but that the ID started witht the letter S.
Let us know how it does this year for you. I have Dabney, Ayers, Carrick and Mericourt from the same Tennessee breeding program growing here. All but Dabney are fruiting this year.
BTW, we are haveing a bad fire blight year. I’ve already lost two varieties topworked to other trees, a lot of limbs on others and innumerable fruit cluisters.
Yes Dr. Natelson is well known for his southern pear interest. I’m growing those you mentioned with the exception of mericourt but I need to add that one! Will keep you updated on how Tenn tastes here in Kansas.
Not as good a fruit set as I hoped for but there is some.
This is the real tenn pear. Its closely related to ayers but larger and more round. Quality is similar but its not as juicy in my limited experience. Like ayers its delayed fruiting at my location but a heavy cropper. Very disease resisstant so i would highly recommend it. Today is September 10th. Fruit has a sour flavor similar to.an apple but its sweet. It is not melting but pleasant enough on my farm. Having got fruit this one year only my experience is limited.
fireblight was very bad here this year but not on tenn or ayers or any of the fireblight resistant types.
150 chill hours is right on target here.
Picked Tenn a little early today. The trees are on the outskirts of my main orchard in an area that is not fenced. Today is September 17th.
Nice. I found it to be super vigorous vertical grower, even on 333. Keep a close eye, spread branches early, summer prune excessive growth periodically, shortening as the summer progresses to produce flowering buds at the base of growth.
Good advice im trying to grow vertical asap get them up off the ground above the deers heads in my situation. Fencing materials have gotten very expensive. A roll of wire is over $120 now that cost $40 a few years ago.
Vertical on callery is perfect for you.
I easily had 3-4’ growth coming from everywhere!
Tenn turned very juicy today! Its pretty sour even when ripe.
Nice looking pear! Makes my mouth water:)
Had one today that was more sour than expected but fully ripe. The pear once completely ripe turned very juicy like ayers. This may be the type of pear better freshly eaten when not dead ripe. Once the flesh turned melting the sour tasted overdone a little bit. It’s not completely right to eat this pear after drippin honey, warren and harrow sweet then declare it sour. Still i stand behind what i said it is much more sour and apple like than the others. When cooking i look at sour as a favorable attribute in a pear. Similar to sour cherries in pie some pears make a great pie. It’s still a bit early to know everything there is to know about this pear. Had several fresh days ago that were a good balance of sweet and sour. Always save a few back to see how time impacts flavor. There is no doubt that ayers is closely related to Tenn.
How did your Mericourt pears turn out?
Maybe we will get more Tenn Pears to try this year. I’m curious about this variety. Some were slightly sour, some slightly astringent, some tasted ok.