This year's tree is much smaller and younger than last year's willow and is one that we planted in the garden. It's the pear tree 'Doyenne du Comice,' which was introduced into the garden in the autumn of 2011. She was transplanted some twenty feet or so last February - a case of being in the wrong place and happily survived to tell the tale. At the moment she stands at about six feet - the tape measure has not come out but I've stood against her and worked it out that way. I will be interested to see how much she grows over the coming year. I forgot to check her girth so will do that before next month.
There was great excitement last year when she produced her first ever crop. A grand total of three fruits made it to maturity and then disaster struck - they turned mushy before they made it into our mouths. Oh there was much wailing and gnashing of disappointed teeth! As the comedian Eddie Izzard said of pears 'they're gorgeous little beasts, but they're ripe for half an hour, and you are never there. They're like a rock or they're mush". Well that might be exaggerating but I do think that I will have to check them on a daily basis after picking this year. That's of course presuming that I will have a harvest to pick.
As suggested by its name this pear originated in France and it is widely reputed to have the best flavour and texture of any pear. I think it was those character references that sold it to me. It was raised in Angers, France in the 1840s so has now been around for some time. It was apparently introduced to Britain in 1858. I think that I was so sold on the mouth-watering descriptions of' Doyenne du Comice' that my research stopped at the f word i.e. flavour. Further reading following purchase and planting revealed that she is sterile so a pollination pear partner was introduced the following year which I think is 'Concorde'. Now a third tree Malus 'Red Sentinel' has joined them to add to the blossom effect. The latter which is only a small tree, was only planted last spring so I'm eagerly anticipating its first flowers.
Only a couple of close-up photos today as the weather has thwarted my plans to take a couple more photos in addition to the ones I took yesterday. It is pouring down out there and from what the forecast is predicting we are in for a cold weekend. However as you can see the leaves are poised ready to break out any day now. Possibly next month will see a pear tree dressed from head to toe in white.
Thanks as always to the lovely Lucy over at 'Loose and Leafy' who enables a veritable parliament of trees from far and wide to get together each month. I'm really looking forward to another year of tree following.