Monday, January 23, 2012

Yakumo Asian pear

The Asian pear has been grown in Asia for centuries and more recently here in the United States. There are over 100 varieties of Asian pears but most of these are grown in Japan. We have 14 varieties here in our collection . These are sometimes called Chinese pears, salad pears or apple pears. They range in size, color, shape and flavor. The Yakumo Asian pear is the first to ripen in our orchard, usually the second week of August. The Yakumo asian pear has bright yellow thin skin. Its fruits are amazingly juicy, crisp, crunchy and have a sweet melon like flavor. They are perfect to eat right off the tree. In fact my sons and their friends circle around the trees for weeks eating these treats. And so do I.

The only real problems we have had is that the bears find them quite attractive and usually break off some of the fruit loaded branches. This we remedy with electric fence from about mid July to the end of harvest. The Yakumo Asian pear begins to bear fruit at a young age and needs another variety of asian pear for pollination. It also tends to over bear and needs heavy thinning to achieve bigger fruit size. We usually try to thin to one fruit for every 5 inches of limb. This usually requires taking off more than half the fruits. Besides eating the fruit right off the tree they will hold in cold storage for a few months.The pears make a great addition to salads both mixed with fruits or vegetables and are also great to use for cooking.They also are a very attractive tree and in the spring their flowers put on quite a show. We have really enjoyed these wonderful, productive trees.

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