Pear Trees from Seed

Discussion in 'Fruit and Nut Trees' started by The New Guy, May 28, 2009.

  1. The New Guy

    The New Guy Active Member

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    I have some 1-year-old Ya Li (or Yali) pear tree saplings that I started from seeds obtained from store-bought pears. I was wondering if these would ever produce fruit (like the ones the seeds came from) or if they would be sterile or something else . . . Any ideas?

    I also threw some Bartlett pears in my garden last fall and I am now noticing little pear trees coming up. Will those be any good?

    Thanks for any help.
     
  2. vitog

    vitog Rising Contributor 10 Years

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    This question has been asked many times before, and the answer is always the same: no, fruit trees from seed are not worth the effort to grow. You don't know what you are going to get. It is unlikely to be close to the parent tree. And it will take many years before the tree bears fruit. All temperate fruit tree varieties that I'm aware of are grafted clones. If you really want a particular variety of fruit tree, buy it at a garden center or nursery.
     
  3. The New Guy

    The New Guy Active Member

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    Well, I’ve actually had very much luck with peach trees from seed. I have several trees that were started from seeds (either from fallen fruit or planted by squirrels), and these trees produce fruit relatively quickly, they produce an exceptional quantity, and the fruit is, in fact, similar to or better than those produced by the original trees.

    I was just wondering if I would be able to obtain equally satisfactory results from pears.
     
  4. mchammer

    mchammer Member

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    Unfortunately Apple and Pear trees are very difficult to get fruit of decent quality from seed (something like 1 in 10,000 attempts). They also typically take 5-7 years before fruiting. So you never know! But...

    Peach trees from seed can produce fruit within 3 years and are much more likely to be of edible quality.
     
  5. boydrh

    boydrh Member

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    Where did you find this number? an apple tree makes what, 200 apples a year? that would mean that it will make ONE offspring in 50 years. It seems statistically infeasible for the apple/pear tree population to survive with this reproduction rate. next time you give such a dramatic number, you'd be better off citing your sources.
     
  6. Daniel Mosquin

    Daniel Mosquin Paragon of Plants UBC Botanical Garden Forums Administrator Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    No, it doesn't mean that at all. mchammer's statement was qualified with "of decent quality", which I interpret to mean an apple that might become a usable cultivar. It doesn't mean that only one in ten thousand seeds is viable -- only that one in ten thousand plants growing from the seeds will bear fruit that is worthwhile to have grown (i.e., something with qualities that are better than what you will get with a known cultivar).

    As for the number itself, I think it's also apparent that the one in ten thousand figure is conjecture as opposed to a statement of fact. That said, it is likely correct within an order of magnitude, given how often new cultivars are introduced into the market. I suppose one would need to know how many attempts orchardists make to find new worthwhile cultivars vs. how many new cultivars are actually introduced.
     
  7. Ken Haddrell

    Ken Haddrell Member

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    Actually 1 good variety in ten thousand seeds is probably quite low. I would suggest 1 in 50,000. Remember there will be 5 to 7 seeds per fruit so you would need 7,000 to 10,000 fruit get 50,000 seeds. A typical bin of pears probably has 2000 fruit per so you need 3 to 5 bins of fruit to get the seeds. This why fruit breeders need a lot of space to and time to create new varieties. I think there may be someone at the 2010 UBC Apple Festival who may be able explain the breeding of tree fruit.

    Apple breeders typically select 10 to 12,000 seeds per year from controlled crosses. (ie. Aurora Golden Gala pollen placed on the stigma of the flower of Ambrosia). It takes bout 20 years from the contrlled cross to commercialization of a selection.
     

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