Fruiting Quince (Cydonia)

Asimina76(7)April 24, 2014

I'm interested in growing Quince for fruit. I'm located in central NC (zone 7-7.5). I have read some stuff indicating that Quince may grow as a bush or a tree depending on climate. I'm not sure what variety I will end up with, but I think Smyrna looks promising.

Does anyone have any advice for me regarding growing Quince in the South? Are there any pitfalls I should look out for?


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Scott F Smith(6B/7A MD)

Yes, fireblight can be horrendous. It was for me and I removed my quince. You can also have big problems with the standard apple pests, codling moth in particular. Fireblight is very sporadic, its not like codling moth which will surely eventually come; its possible to get lucky and avoid firelight for some time.


    Bookmark   April 24, 2014 at 9:02PM
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Thanks ScottFSmith. How about rust? Any thoughts on the habit of the tree? Should I try to maintain a traditional fruit tree shape?

    Bookmark   April 25, 2014 at 1:21PM
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Aromatnaya is supposed to be resistant to fireblight (though not immune). Scott, did you end up trying that variety? I recall that you've tried a lot and culled them all, due to disease issues.

If you let it grow as a bush, perhaps it would grow enough branches from the base to replace any pruned from fireblight. Then again, perhaps a tree form would have better airflow. I'm in WI, I can't really comment on growing them in the South.

    Bookmark   April 26, 2014 at 6:58AM
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Scott F Smith(6B/7A MD)

Yes, I tried Aromatnaya. It was the only one that was completely killed by FB.

Quince rust proved to be horrendous as well. That was actually what finally led me to pull the trees. Its much worse than cedar apple rust in that it ruins all the fruits once it gets going. It can be sprayed for (myclobutanil) so its overall not as bad as fireblight if you are willing to spray synthetics.

Quince is somewhere between apple and pear in terms of growth habit, it can be trained to any of the standard apple and pear shapes. It will have only one trunk, its your standard fruit tree.

BTW I have some new quince, they are experimental FB resistant varieties from Bulgaria. They already are showing some FB signs so I am not super optimistic but they may be tolerant enough to keep.


    Bookmark   April 26, 2014 at 8:52AM
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