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We live in the north of Scotland and want to plant a pear tree but are not sure which variety would be most suitable, does any one have any advice on which would be best?

Barry

fidgetbones

If you are only planting one tree, it has to be self fertile. Conference is self fertile, but I don't know how well it would fruit up North. You could train it on a wall to give it some protection

BobTheGardener

Barry, most pears need warmer temperatures than apple trees so the usual varieties are unlikely to do well.  Pollination will also be an issue in the colder climate as there may not be many bees or other pollinating insects about when they blossom so hand-pollination may be necessary.  If you really want to give it a go, I found this Canadian site with recommended varieties - see if you can find any of them from UK suppliers:

http://www.hardyfruittrees.ca/catalog/pear-tree

Barry, I'm in Aberdeenshire and love pears but was advised by a gardener at Fyvie Castle Garden of Historic Scottish Fruit that pears are very tricky indeed up here.  Too cold.  They grow espaliered pears on the south facing walls of a very sheltered, high-walled enclosed garden, and they have trouble with them.....so.....I've decided not to bother!

Oh, that does not sound promising.

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hogweed

I live in central Scotland. Had a very old pear tree in the garden. Had two types of pears on it - main tree had round pears, the growth from below the graft had conference type pears. I had pears coming out of my ears most years. No idea of variety. Not particularly sheltered in a north facing garden!

Barry....how 'north' are you?  A  hundred miles or so can make a lot of difference.  Does anyone else nearby manage to grow pears?  Might be worth asking around, because if someone else can, then YOU can!

hogweed

Friend has a pear tree in Morayshire. are you that far north?

I am indeed, hogweed, don't know about Barry...

 Does it get fruit??

hogweed

Yes, lots of fruit.

Barry's about 20 miles north of Inverness neading towards Tain.

Oh that's pretty far north! Best of luck, if you decide to go for it! 

hogweed

Not that much further than moray then. 

Might have a chance, need to get the right variety i think, any ideas? 

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pansyface

AS ABOVE, VIZ:

Variety

Rootstock/other information

Beurre Superfin

Sweet & Juicy, mid, on pear seedling

Beth

Early, on Pear & quince Eline

Carrick*

Scottish, pear seedling

Chalk *

Heritage; on quinceA

Christie*

Big fruit! On pear & quinceA

Conference

Reliable SF variety on quince Eline

Craig’s Favourite*

Margaret’s favourite too. On pear & QuinceA

Crawford*

On pear seedling

Durondeau

Early russet pear on pear seedling

Fair Maid of Perth*

Local lass on pear seedling

Moonglow

Tasty modern pear on quinceA

Goudknap*

AKA Gold Knob Scarce Scottish pear 

Gorham

Early, reliable. On pear seedling

Grey Benvie

Another local on pear seedling

Hessle

The Hazel Pear of the Clyde Valley. On pear and quinceA

Improved Fertility

On pear seedling

Jargonelle

Tip-bearing, old pear of Perth. On pear

Longueville *

Brought to Scotland by the Black Douglas..? on pear seedling

Louise Bonne de Jersey

Reliable & early; pear and quinceA

Maggie *

Scottish pear on quince and pear

Precoce de Trevoux

Heritage pear on pear seedling

Seggieden *

Another Carse of Gowrie pear; on quinceA

Winter Nelis

Late keeper

Williams Bon Chretien

Popular juice-monger on quince Eline

The Willowgate Sausage Pear *

A very special pear, juicy and prolific. Found in 3 orchards in Perthshire and with no genetic match in National Fruit Collection. Fruit rather sausage shaped! Officially known only by a reference number, probably a lost Scots variety. On pear and quince A.

Jeez, Pansy!  Maybe you should email that list to Fyvie Castle!

Blimey! that's a long list, any advice on which one would be best for a sheltered sunny spot grown by a beginner?

Thanks for the list.

pansyface

AS MENTIONED ABOVE, TRY ASKING PLANTS AND APPLES FOR ADVICE.

I can't comment on types as i have no clue what I have (the two trees came with the house one is a soft comice type eater and the other a cooker I feel) But I live up in Northern Denmark, (same lattitude as Aberdeen) and have two pear trees on a very exposed site. they do get some shelter but not enough to stop them both being blown over when I bought the place, I've stood them back up, cleared some of the roses from around them, dumped a bucket of ash on both and this year I got 5kg from one tree, the other produced well last year. we get down to -15 for at least a few days each winter, and it stays in the - for 2-3 months. So I think unless you're high up in the highlands pears should be possible.