Shinko Asian pear observations and questions
In the spring of 2006, I planted a Shinko Asina pear and a Seckel European pear.
Both of these are sometimes described as self fertile. My hope was that between the possibilities of them 1)being self fertile 2) pollenizing each other, and 3) being pollenized by the numerous ornamental pears in the neighborhood, I would get pears.
The Shinko flowered this spring, the Seckel did not (no surprise there)
As an imperfect experiment, I hand pollenated two of the flower clusters with flowers from ornamental pears.
All clusters set several pears, I saw no difference in the two clusters that were hand pollinated.
This leaves two possibilities:
1) Shinko really is self fertile
2) Shinko can be pollenized by ornamental pears, and there was so much ornamental pear pollen in the air that my hand pollinating made no difference. There are two within 200 feet of my yard, and dozens within several blocks.
I suspect Shinko really is self fertile but all I can really conclude is that if you plant Shinko, and there are ornamental pears around, you will get fruit!
Maybe next spring I will bag a couple clusters to keep out any other pollen.
Now my question. Tonight I went to check the ripeness of the pears by the flashlight method described in another thread, and they came off in my hand! So I picked them all (all 6 :) ) I ate one, it was fantastic! I weighed the other 5, and together they weigh 32 ounces, for an average of 6.4 ounces. Does that sound right? They look small to me, but I'm biased by the big ones that show up in the store a couple times a year, and cost $2 each.
I thinned them to 1 per cluster when they were between grape and walnut size. Should I thin earlier? The tree is in sun from mid day to early evening, about 6 hours. It's in shade in the morning, so it's not exactly full sun. Any others here have experience with Shinko?