3 in 1 pear tree

tnmom66(7a)May 24, 2013

I planted a 3 in 1 (Kieffer, Moonglow, Bartlett) pear tree last year and I was surprised to find at least 18 little pears on it this spring. I know nothing about pears other than they say not to feed it too much so it won't get "fire blight" and it is hard to know when to pick the pears. I want to grow as organically as possible, but I also don't want bugs and worms eating my pears. Can anyone give me ideas of how to get the most out of this tree?

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Have never 'sprayed' a pear tree - they usually don't require much, in the way of care, to produce mostly usable fruits - and most will be virtually perfect.
Now, as to when to pick them and how best to 'ripen' them - it may take years for you to figure it out fully. If you let them 'ripen on the tree', you'll find that they'll often be over-ripe internally - rotting from the inside out, as many refer to it.

The European pears - Moonglow, Bartlett - need to be picked while still firm - but beginning to 'yield' to pressure at the base of the stem, then refrigerated (as close to 30 degrees as you can get them) until a few days before you'd like to eat them, then remove them from the fridge and allow them to ripen at room temp until they reach the state you prefer.
Now, me - I want a firm, juicy, crunchy (and, yes, gritty!) pear - so the Kieffer is more to my liking.

Do an internet search - and it has been discussed here on numerous occasions, so search this site first - for 'ripening pears' - you'll probably find enough conflicting info to make your head spin. It may just take you a few years to figure out when is the best time to pick them - and each variety will be different.

    Bookmark   May 24, 2013 at 5:04PM
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OFM and codling moth are the enemy of the pears their laeva destroy the fruit. Two years in a row they devastated my fruits. Chemical sprays do not help because you don't see who you are fighting. Because the adult bugs do not damage the fruit I am preventing the eggs from hatching I use organic spray Hitrocultural oil and sourrend So far so good

    Bookmark   May 24, 2013 at 5:25PM
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My situation is more like Lucky. I've seen bug marks on pears but the damage was only skin deep. No internal damage. Some say because pear skin is tougher and the fruit grow so fast. It seems stone fruit like plum and peach often get more damage.

I hope you don't keep all 18 little pears. Your tree was just planted last year. You don't want your young tree to spend so much energy on fruit. You could stunt the tree's growth.

My Harrow Sweet pear planted last year had about 10-11 fruitlets. I thinned ithem down to 4 as of today. I'll see. I may keep all 4 or only one or two.

    Bookmark   May 24, 2013 at 7:43PM
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Codling moth can damage pears. You can see a tiny black spot, usually at the calyx end, but by the time the pear has ripened off the tree, it's turned into a big rotten black spot.

Otherwise, as lucky says, they're relatively trouble-free fruits.

    Bookmark   May 24, 2013 at 7:53PM
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I was wondering if I should thin the fruits. It is a pretty big tree...it was in a big pot...not a bare root plant, but this is the first year it has made fruit. Is it to late to thin them? I could at least thin it down to one pear per cluster. What would nature do? Just make smaller pears? I can't imagine it would suck all the vitality out of the plant to just leave it alone...but what do I know. I didn't give it fertility drugs or anything.

    Bookmark   May 24, 2013 at 9:18PM
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This will be my first year with pears as well. Before I start thinning, do pears suffer from 'June Drop' as well? Mrs. G

    Bookmark   May 24, 2013 at 9:23PM
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I am also wondering if I should stake it. When I planted it, I put a stake beside it.I don't know if a kid pulled the stake up or what, but I found it beside the tree a few weeks ago. The tree leans slightly to one side and it doesn't seem firmly rooted--I can push on it and it straightens..I am not sure if the whole root ball is moving. I am not sure what to do. I am inclined to stake it again and also to put more dirt in the hole and tamp it down tightly. I wonder if I didn't plant it right. I left a depression around it. I thought it was bad to pile too much dirt up around the trunk.

    Bookmark   May 24, 2013 at 9:26PM
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For a potted tree like yours, you should plant it in the ground the same level as it's in the pot. No need to pile more dirt on it. But it's important that the tree is firmly planted, staking or not. If you just put it in the ground a few weeks ago, adjust it using a shovel or replant it should not do any damage.

If you don't thin, it's likely that you would get smaller pears and its taste may not be fully developed. I would leave only one or at most two pears per cluster. Early on, I did not thin aggressively enough, my A.pears were small and did not taste any good.

I have heard about "June drop". In recent years, I have not suffered June drop of my A. pear, peach or apple. I feel that my thinning aggressively and early may have prevented that.

    Bookmark   May 24, 2013 at 9:45PM
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