Quinces, specifically Karp's

alh_in_flFebruary 19, 2013

I have two Karp's sweet quince trees which I purchased from Raintree Nursery and planted about a year ago. They're supposed to grow in this zone .

I know very little about quinces and what to expect from them. These never completely lost their leaves over the winter. But they are starting to put out new growth. We've had about 300 chill hours this winter and will likely still have some nights in the 40's before the season is over.

Does anyone have quinces, especially Karp's?

What should I expect from them this spring as far as flowering, growing, and fruiting? Do they flower before leaves come out? When does this happen? (There were no flowers or fruit last year but I didn't expect any since they had just been transplanted.)

Any special tips on care?

Thanks,
Ann

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murkwell

They leaf out before flowering. Before the leaves open they look almost like green flowers.

I'm assuming it is humid in the summer there. Quince may not like that.

I have some quince trees but they are very young, so I can't tell you much from experience, and I live near Portland, OR so the climate is probably very different here anyway.

If Karp's sweet is the same as Majes Valley, then I have it just grafted last spring.

    Bookmark   February 19, 2013 at 2:53PM
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armyofda12mnkeys(7a, Philly, PA)

I have this variety planted last year. Might get fruit this year...
Remember it may be a tip bearer so don't prune those tips maybe:

http://www.cloudforest.com/cafe/apples/edgar-quince-david-carp-quince-scab-magnet-t1213.html

    Bookmark   February 19, 2013 at 6:19PM
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Scott F Smith(6B/7A MD)

Ann, quince are magnets for fireblight and quince rust in the south. I mostly gave up on them. Karp's gave me one year of fruit which all rusted. I rewarded the tree by turning it into a rootstock for a pear. I had edible fruit on my quince for 3-4 years, but they got progressively more diseased every year.

Scott

    Bookmark   February 19, 2013 at 8:40PM
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larry_gene

Also in Portland, I can tell you that ripening quince fruit does not like moisture or humidity, brown rot / splits are the result.

Your over-wintered leaves could be normal for Florida, especially if they are near the ends of new branchlets.

The tree starts to flower when the leaves are newish and about 1 or 2 inches long. Pinkish buds will be the hint. Bloom here is in early April. Florida could be a month earlier for all phases.

    Bookmark   February 19, 2013 at 10:51PM
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alh_in_fl

Yes the summers are humid here. Glad to hear that the leaves come out before the blossoms-- that means they might still blossom.

But I didn't know they were so susceptible to disease.
What can I do to help prevent the rust and fireblight? I read that antibiotic sprays can be used for fireblight prevention. True?
Since rust is a fungus, could I proactively spray with an antifungal? If so should I spray the leaves, the blossoms, or the fruit, or some combination of the above?

Thank you
Ann

    Bookmark   February 20, 2013 at 11:35AM
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Scott F Smith(6B/7A MD)

Ann, fireblight is pretty hard to control on quince even with sprays (I tried and failed). If you don't have a lot of apples or pears nearby you may do OK. Quince rust is eminently controllable with a spray or two of myclobutanil during the infection period. I don't recall the timing of quince rust but am sure there is a webpage mentioning it somewhere. If the timing is not right there is no reason to spray at all, it won't do anything if you are off by more than a week or two. I am a minimal spray guy and for me its too much work, and also I have many apples and pears and firebilght is a really big problem for me.

I still do have a few quince, they are some supposedly fireblight resistant varieties. I'm not super optimistic but am giving them a go.

Scott

    Bookmark   February 20, 2013 at 2:58PM
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alh_in_fl

Scott, There are no apples or pears nearby that I know of. My quinces are in my backyard in an urban residential area. So hopefully the fireblight is not a big risk.
I will look into how to prevent rust.

Related to that-- I've been using a sprinkler to water the area where one of the quinces is. Obviously this means the whole tree gets wet every time. Is this a bad idea, seeing as how fungus likes wet conditions?

    Bookmark   February 21, 2013 at 10:10AM
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Scott F Smith(6B/7A MD)

Fireblight is a big risk everywhere in the south. Ornamental apples and pears are everywhere. I used to think there were none by my house but then I started looking and I now know there are many.

Hitting a tree with a sprinkler is like a rain event, the diseases throw a party for either. If its a short sprinkling and its sunny out and will dry off soon it won't have a lot of impact.

Scott

    Bookmark   February 21, 2013 at 10:18PM
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john_in_sc

You would be amazed....

All you need is an ornamental pear somewhere around.....

We don't have any ornamental pears in the neighborhood - but they are very common in the region.... and I completely lost 1 apple tree this past year to fireblight....

So... I would second Scott's recommendation that if you want a Quince - try hard to get a Fireblight resistant cultivar...

Thanks

    Bookmark   February 26, 2013 at 10:06AM
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alh_in_fl

Sounds discouraging (sigh)-- but I will try to stay optimistic anyway.

The Karp's quinces have already been in the ground for a year so I think I'll see how they go. I'll stop sprinkling the area and watch them closely for disease and give a try at treating them if anything happens. Maybe I'll get lucky. Thanks for the advice because now I know what to beware of.

    Bookmark   February 26, 2013 at 10:39AM
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alh_in_fl

Followup:
The quinces bloomed last month and they still look healthy- I'm keeping my fingers crossed.

    Bookmark   June 11, 2013 at 11:36AM
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Scott F Smith(6B/7A MD)

Fireblight is quite random. Often it takes a few years to find your trees. My quince were fine for 3-4 years. Once it latches on its hard to get rid of.

Over the winter I removed my last European cider apples which are highly FB prone, and I have thus far had no fireblight this year. My quince and Euro cider apples were causing huge problems for my apples.

Scott

    Bookmark   June 11, 2013 at 12:34PM
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monarda_gw

My mother grew a quince tree near Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. She had springs on her land and the quince was planted near, but not too near, to one. The soil was neutral to alkaline. It bore generously. There are also some growing in the Cloisters, in NYC. I think they do fine. It must be cooler up here than in the South. They are beautiful small trees, in my opinion.

    Bookmark   October 14, 2013 at 10:26AM
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skyjs(z8 OR, USA)

Karp's sweet quince is hard to grow here. It gets lots of diseases. Many just gave up.

My quinces get rust. I spray them with fungal compost tea and it takes care of it. I am organically oriented.

They will get rust bad every year here. You will need to have some solution. I would think that Florida would be the same or worse, because we have dry long summers.
John S
PDX OR

    Bookmark   October 14, 2013 at 10:59AM
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fruitmaven.WIz5(5)

I'm in WI, but I have a friend in Lexington, VA (inland, up in the mountains). It rained nearly every day there this summer, and there are quince trees at a nearby public garden that bore well and weren't touched by disease. They've been there a long time, too. All their plants are well-labelled, so she is going swing by and tell me what variety it is. I'll let you all know.

    Bookmark   November 1, 2013 at 10:42PM
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larry_gene

John, what is the nature of your quince rust? My tree in Portland never gets it.

    Bookmark   November 1, 2013 at 11:31PM
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murkwell

Larry, I got a little bit of rust on from your quince variety one season. It seemed to self recover and didn't have an issue after that.

    Bookmark   November 1, 2013 at 11:52PM
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skyjs(z8 OR, USA)

Hi larry gene,
I have Crimea, Kaunching, and Kuganskaya. I get rust bad every rainy spring, which is every spring. Most people I've talked to around here also get it. It is orange. The fungal compost tea takes care of it but by late June much damage has already been done. It also gets my service berries and shipova badly. Next spring I'm going to spray fungal compost tea twice in the spring ( April at leaf out and in June) and once in September to see if that improves it. I also realized how aggressivelly I need to prune. It's from a dry area. We're not so dry here in spring.
What variety do you grow? I prefer the fresh eating varieties, and I'm organic, so it can be a bit more challenging, but it's definitely worth it for me. These quinces are some of my favorite fruits. What variety do you grow murky?
Thanks
John S
PDX OR

    Bookmark   November 2, 2013 at 1:43AM
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murkwell

John,

In the house in Vancouver I have the first tree that I grafted. At the time the Home Orchard Society taught grafting class at Clackamas Community College offered quince as a dwarfing rootstock for pear to use to make a tree at the class.

Instead of grafting an apple or pear tree at the event, I took the quince rootstock home with me and used it with scion wood collected from Larry's quince tree. So I literally have the same variety as he does which I recall him calling Pineapple.

Quince from his tree were the first I had tasted. He has been very generous to me with fruit and knowledge when I was just getting started. From him I also got my first samples of feijoa, calamondin and perhaps seaberry.

    Bookmark   November 2, 2013 at 7:45AM
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