I don’t doubt that the dry air in some areas is probably a safer environment for them. Oddly, I contacted the American Chestnut Foundation to confirm that mine was a native American, which they did, but they seemed wholly disinterested in pollinating the tree. Of course I had that hope that maybe my tree was that one specimen that had some real resistance to the blight and would be the answer. They responded that mine would die of the blight eventually and that it was just a matter of time. Sadly, they were right.
Again, my apologies for hijacking, because I was and am very interested in the original topic about Euro pears. That said, I find this interesting and it may be of value to some of the members. It’s the American Chestnut Foundation page, specifically their page and tutorial about how to submit samples, which they encourage.
I think it’s interesting to note that they give different people and addresses to submit your sample to, depending on where it was found. They ONLY list sources as far west as Indiana, nothing in the American west. I wonder if the trees weren’t native to the west and all the trees there now were transplants at some point and they doubt the genetic purity. I may have to make a phone call on Monday and try to get some of this figured out because you guys have me really curious about those western trees now. One would think that if there are large trees in the west that are escaping the blight because of isolation or dry climate, that they’d be ideal seed sources for the ongoing research and hybridization project. (For what it’s worth, I’ve sent an email to a research tech from the American Chestnut Foundation and asked if she has any thoughts about this. If she responds to me, I’ll be sure to post her thoughts, probably on a separate thread so as not to hijack this one any more).
I’ve worked full-time as a wildlife/conservation professional for nearly 3 decades in northern Pennsylvania and during that time, I’ve seen dozens of “big” American chestnut trees and hundreds or thousands of saplings, but I’ve only seen one living tree that was larger than mine and that tree died about 20 years ago. What’s really sad about that is that my tree is really an impressive specimen, but it’s not even remotely as large as the monarchs that were common in the eastern forests back in the day…
Hello friends, this is my first intervention in the forum, and I will try to choose varieties of European pears that I like ( but it is impossible to reduce the list to five varieties).
These varieties are my favorite :
CLASSIC VARIETIES :
Beurré d Amanlis
Beurre de Merode
Bonne Louise d Avranches
Doyenné du Comice
Olivier de Serres
Triomphe de Vienne
RECENT VARIETIES :
Of all these pears , the variety most sensitive to fire blight is the variety Passe Crasanne, so I do not recommend this variety (despite being really delicious).
As a first barrier in the struggle of fireblight, is the choice of the variety and rootstock.
In my orchard, the rootstock Farold 87 Daytor has very good behavior
On this topic i would have to recommend the best portuguese Pear we have (and for me one of the best in the world).
It is known by “Pera Rocha” or “Pera Rocha do Oeste”. In my orchard it was the only Pear cultivated by my ancestors.
I still have trees of this variety that are more than 40 years old.
If you ask a Portuguese nacional to name a pear variety he will name this one. It’s the most widespread over here because of it’s qualities - it matures in August and it has a hard pulp (soft if you let it mature a bit more), very juicy, with lots of sugar and excellent flavour. I like it on the optimum point of maturity when you bite it and the juice drips from your mouth. Apart from that it has quite a low chilling requirement when compared to other European Pears.
it’s complicated to answer. Because the period of maturity should be taken into account.
You can ask for the best early, the best in season, the best late, the best long-life and why not the best to cook.
the possibilities are vast. but if you have room. the 5 best pear at the same time will not allow you to eat them.
I’ve got a seckel and an ayers I’m looking forward to trying. Has anyone ever tried the pineapple pear? I have one coming this spring but I can’t find anything other than people trying to sell them mention taste or flesh grit.
I didn’t know that but try grafting it on hillside hawthorn (very thorny and prevalent here), and maybe it will be a useful interstem for Asian parts and maybe some others, I have a little Clara Fris grafting material now, that’s the must compatible I believe.
I’ve mentioned my faves on various threads but don’t see it here.
Fondante des Moulins-Lille
I think for most locations Aurora also is top but it is a bit too prone to core rot for me. I took it out but miss it. FdML is not necessarily top-5 just in terms of taste but it is a different sort than the others, very sweet and juicy, so it is in the top five keepers for me. Urbaniste is not very productive but my tree has been improving year by year and maybe it will eventually be good. Magness also took a long time to get going. The other three are precocious and productive.
I do have a blakes pride tree covered in blooms now. Have not ever harvested good fruit from it yet. @mamuang is familiar with blakes pride. If you want to know the ripening times of many of my pears fortunately i keep good records.
I’m looking at the 2019 one. Pretty good chronicle with pics. You should do an overall pear report like Scott does with apples. Put them in order of ripening with descriptions and personal growing notes. No one has done one for pears and I’m sure more than me would find it useful.