As long as you are committed to the attention to detail and pest management that the crop requires, pears are excellent candidates for backyard growers. Pears share many cultural similarities and pest problems with apples. They are botanically grouped with apples and are collectively called 'pome fruits'.
Selecting pear varieties
Bearing age and height
|European Pears - listed in order of ripening. All listed cultivars have fire blight resistance. Bartlett, Bosc, Comice, Anjou, and Clapp's Favorite are all fire blight susceptible.
|Harrow Delight||Juicy, medium-sized fruits. Smooth flesh, no grit cells. Productive trees.|
|Moonglow||Medium-to-large, dull green fruits with a pink blush. Smooth, fine flesh; excellent quality.|
|Hardier and earlier, but very similar to Bartlett.|
|Honeysweet||Firm fruit with cream-colored flesh; very similar to Seckel.|
|Seckel||Can be nearly “tree-ripened.” Very sweet, small fruits. Referred to as the “sugar pear.”|
Medium-sized fruits of excellent quality. Pollen is sterile; must be grown with two other cultivars. Must be kept in cold storage for one month prior to eating.
|Asian Pears - most have good to excellent resistance to fire blight|
|Hosui||Vigorous, spreading tree with very sweet, russeted fruit.|
|Olympic||Large, upright tree with very large, russeted fruit that stores well.|
|Shenseiki||Large vigorous tree; fruit is medium-to-large with little russeting.|
|Medium-size tree with drooping habit. Yellow, high-quality fruit. Very productive; fruit must be thinned.|
|Shinko||Firm, crisp fruit stores well.|
Pear pollination requirements
Pears are mostly self-sterile and requires a pollenizer.