The main types of stocks for pears in different regions and the features of their cultivation

The right choice of the most suitable stock is of great importance for obtaining long-term and productive pear trees. The height of the tree, its winter hardiness, and the fruiting start date depend on the stock. In order to be able to make an informed choice of seedlings when buying, every gardener needs to know the basic minimum of information about rootstocks, even if you do not plan to graft garden trees yourself.

What are stocks and why are they needed

Obtaining planting material for cultivated pear varieties is not an easy task. Under normal conditions, pear trees do not form root offspring; their cuttings and branches take root with great difficulty and by no means always, and when sowing seeds, heterogeneous offspring are obtained, and only a few seedlings retain at least partially the valuable qualities of the original variety. Therefore, the only practical method of propagation of pear varieties is grafting onto various easily propagated stocks. On a dwarf rootstock, a pear grows undersized, convenient for care and harvesting, and a little earlier begins to bear fruit. Using special flexible stocks gets to get pear trees, easily bent for the winter for wintering under the snow.

Pear on quince is stunted, quick-growing and fruitful

To grow standard seedlings, young plants are planted at a height of 5-8 centimeters from the surface of the earth. In amateur gardening, crown vaccinations are also often applied to adult trees (up to 15 years). This allows you to restore a tree damaged by frost or replace an unsuccessful variety with a more valuable one.

To obtain varietal seedlings, rootstocks are grafted low above the ground in the first or second year of their growth.

Basic definitions:

  • The stock is what they plant. The lower part of the seedling is the root system and the base of the trunk, in cases of grafting into the crown - also the entire trunk, the base of the skeletal branches and the remaining unvaccinated branches.
  • Privoy is a grafted cultivar. The upper part of the seedling above the site of vaccination.
  • Vaccination is a technology for combining stock and scion for their further fusion. Inoculations are also called surviving shoots and branches of the scion.

The main criteria for choosing a stock for a pear:

  • winter hardiness;
  • drought tolerance;
  • the depth of the roots;
  • height of grafted trees;
  • durability;
  • compatibility of the stock with the cultivar.

Strong-growing seed stocks for a pear

The tallest, most powerful and durable trees are obtained by grafting cultivars on wild pear seedlings. Several types of wild pears are suitable for these purposes, all of them are vigorous trees up to 8-15 meters high, with a deeply penetrating rod root system. To plant a pear on a seed stock, groundwater should be no closer than 1.5–2 meters from the surface of the earth. Vigorous pears bear fruit abundantly up to 50–100 years, the first fruits appear 5–10 years after vaccination.

Wild forest pear as a stock (video)

Comparative characteristics of different types of wild pears (table)

TitleDrought toleranceWhere it grows in natureRegions of growth in natureWinter hardinessWhere can be used as stock
Ussuri pearLowWet mixed forests along the fringes and river banksFar East of RussiaVery high (-40 ..- 45 ° C)Far East, Siberia
Forest pearAverageForest edges and clearingsCentral and southern regions of Russia and UkraineMedium (-25 ..- 35 ° C)The whole territory of Ukraine, central and southern Russia
Pear Very high Woodlands, dry rocky slopesCrimea, Caucasus Hardy only in the southern regions Southern arid regions of Ukraine, Crimea, Caucasus
Pear loosestrifeCaucasus

In the European part of Russia, the wild Ussuri pear does not grow well and has low compatibility with cultivars, but it has been successfully used for hybridization with European pears in the cultivation of winter-hardy northern varieties.

Photo gallery of wild pear species used as stock for cultivars

Ussuri pear in bloom

The fruits of the Ussuri pear

Forest pear in bloom

Pear fruit

Pear foliar in bloom

Pear fruit

Pear loosestrife in bloom

Loose pear fruit

In the early 1990s, my grandfather successfully planted varietal pears on seedlings of a huge wild pear with small fruits growing in our garden. Of those grandfather vaccinations, Lada and Chizhovskaya still bear fruit, delighting me with delicious fruits no worse than southern ones. I eliminated a couple of surviving pears with lost labels in the early 2000s - I did not like the quality of their fruits, the varieties were at the level of local semi-cultured rotten pears.

How to grow stock for pear seeds

For sowing, you can use the seeds of wild pears, semi-crops and proven winter-hardy varieties that grow well in the area.

  • In autumn, in September - October, it is necessary to collect fallen pears under the trees, if possible choosing the largest fruits.

    Ripe wild pears are harvested under the trees in September - October

  • When the pears lie a little in the room and become completely soft, but not rotten, they must be carefully cut and the seeds removed.
  • Only large, smooth and thick, intact, fully ripened seeds (color from dark brown to black) are suitable for sowing. Light unripe seeds, as well as small, shriveled or completely flat seeds, do not give seedlings.

    For sowing take large, intact, well-ripened seeds

  • The seeds should be washed with clean water and slightly dried on a saucer, then put in a paper bag.
  • For sowing, you need a prepared bed with fertile loose soil. It is necessary to sow in October, after the onset of cool weather, but before the start of frost.
  • The most durable and hardy trees are obtained by sowing seeds immediately to a permanent place. Their stem roots, not disturbed by the transplant, penetrate to great depths, giving the tree increased resistance to frost and drought. For a direct culture, a round bed is prepared with a diameter of 50–70 centimeters, in the center of which 5 to 10 seeds are sown, placing them no closer than 10-15 centimeters from each other.

    For a direct culture, the distance between the seeds when sowing is at least 10 centimeters

  • On a regular garden bed with subsequent planting, you can sow thicker, at a distance of 7-10 centimeters between rows and 5 centimeters between seeds in a row.
  • The depth of seed placement in the ground is from 2-3 cm on loamy soils to 3-4 cm on light sandy soils.
  • In spring, emerged seedlings must be carefully thinned, leaving at least 15–20 centimeters between plants.
  • Throughout the season, seedlings regularly weed from weeds, loosen aisles and, in the absence of rain, water it.
  • In the south, the most powerful seedlings can be ready for budding in the first summer, in the north this usually happens a year later.

The main features of a seedling on a seed stock:

  • pronounced core root (a good seedling should also have sufficiently developed lateral roots);
  • the characteristic bend at the site of inoculation is slightly higher than the root neck (a seedling is perfectly straight from the root itself - almost certainly a wild bird).

    Seedlings on a seed stock have a pronounced core root and a characteristic bend at the vaccination site

Weak clonal stocks for a pear

In the southern regions, to obtain dwarf trees, pears use vegetatively propagated clone forms of quince as a stock, having a densely branched fibrous root system.

There are no regionalized dwarf rootstocks for pears in the central and northern regions.

Pear trees on quince rootstock grow no higher than 3-4 meters. The maximum life of a pear on a quince is not more than 20–40 years, the first fruits appear in the third or fourth year after vaccination.

Seedlings on a clone quince stock have a densely branched, fibrous root system

Quince has a surface root system, so it can grow in areas with groundwater at a depth of 1 meter from the surface of the earth. It tolerates slight salinization of the soil, but does not grow well on carbonate soils with a high lime content. Quince is very photophilous and needs regular watering. Due to the shallow rooting of the trees, the quince trees grafted onto quince require additional support, especially on light sandy soils.

Comparative characteristics of quince rootstocks for pears (table)

TitleGrafted Tree HeightWinter hardiness of stockApplication areas
Quince Angers (Quince A) Up to 3-4 metersVery low (-7 ..- 8 ° C)Southern Europe, southern Ukraine, subtropics of the Crimea and the Caucasus
Stock VA-29 (clone of quince provence)Low (about -15 ° C)Central and southern regions of Ukraine, southern part of Russia

Many pear varieties are poorly compatible with quince. To overcome this incompatibility, a highly compatible variety (Kyure, Ilyinka, Bere Hardy, Bere Ardanpon) is first planted on quince, and the variety whose fruits they want to receive is already planted on it. Quince VA-29 is compatible with more cultivated pear varieties than quince angers.

Quince seedlings are not used as rootstocks for pears because of their heterogeneity, unpredictable winter hardiness and very frequent cases of incompatibility with scion.

Beginning gardeners in the middle strip often confuse real quince with more winter-hardy henomeles (Japanese quince). Henomeles as a stock for a pear is not suitable. Distinguishing them is very simple:

  • Quince is a small tree or large bush without thorns, with large leaves and large single pinkish-white flowers.
  • Henomeles is a creeping undersized shrub with numerous thorns, very small leaves and bright red flowers.

How to distinguish real quince from genomeles (photo gallery)

Quince - a small tree or shrub with large leaves

Quince blooms in large pinkish-white flowers

Henomeles (Japanese quince) - undersized shrub with small leaves and bright red flowers

How to grow a dwarf stock for a pear

The most reliable and convenient method for propagating clone quince stocks is vertical layering. They are obtained in this way:

  • Starting from the second year after planting, the uterine bushes in the spring are severely cut off, leaving stumps 3-5 cm high.
  • As the shoots appearing from the base of the bush grow, they are sprinkled several times with moist soil after irrigation to make a mound 25–35 centimeters high.

    To obtain vertical layers uterine bushes spud with earth

  • In the spring of next year, the bushes are knocked out, rooted shoots are carefully separated from the base of the bush and planted in a nursery.

    Rooted cuttings are planted in the nursery for growing

Every 3-4 years, the uterine bushes are sure to have a rest, leaving them free to grow without pruning.

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When the stock is ready for vaccination and how is it done

The stock is considered ready for grafting when at the level of 5-10 centimeters from the soil level (the point of future grafting) its thickness will be no less than a pencil.

When growing seedlings, two main methods of vaccination are used:

  • Cowling is carried out in the second half of summer. A T-shaped incision is made in the rootstock bark, into which a small flap of wood with a peephole (kidney) cut from the graft cuttings is inserted and secured with an elastic band.

    Okulirovanie - summer vaccination with an eye (kidney)

  • Copying is carried out in the spring before buds open. The same oblique sections are made on the stock and scion, which are tightly combined with each other and wrapped with an elastic tape.

    Copulation - spring grafting with cuttings

Experimental stocks for pears in amateur gardening

In addition to quince and various types of wild pear, amateur gardeners successfully plant cultivated pear varieties also on ordinary red mountain ash, aronia (chokeberry), and irga. Occasionally, different types of cotoneaster and hawthorn are also used as rootstocks for pears, but information on these plants is very contradictory, and so far there are much fewer successes than failures.

Pear on apple rootstock

Contrary to the widespread misconception, it is absolutely useless to plant a pear in the crown of adult fruiting apple trees, and on seedlings of wild apple trees, and on dwarf apple stocks (various duseny and paradises, including the very popular M9 stock). Vaccinations of a pear on an apple tree easily take root, but do not produce normal growth, let alone fruit, and in two or three years they inevitably die off.

Photogallery of amateur pear rootstocks

Mountain ash in bloom

Rowan fruits

Chokeberry (chokeberry) in bloom

Fruits of chokeberry

Irga in bloom

Fruits of Irgi

Comparative characteristics of amateur stocks for pears (table)

TitleType of growth and sizeVaccine longevityWinter hardiness of stockPear rootstock growing area
Mountain ashTree up to 5-12 meters high10–20 years or moreVery high (up to -40 ..- 50 ° C) North-West and the middle zone of Russia, the Urals, Siberia
Chokeberry (Aronia)Very sprawling shrub up to 2-3 meters high No more than 5–7 yearsHigh (up to -30 ..- 35 ° C)
IrgaErect shrub up to 3–6 meters highVery high (up to -40 ..- 50 ° C)

The cultivar of a pear with such a vaccination does not at all get a record winter hardiness of the stock!

Winter vaccinations and chokeberries are bent to the ground for the winter and secured with hooks for wintering under the snow. Young trunks of these shrubs are very flexible and easily bend. Due to incomplete fusion of pear scion with stock, such vaccinations are never durable, and in 5-7 years they will inevitably break off, but the first fruits of a pear can be obtained already in the second or third year after vaccination.

The pear on the irga and the chokeberry are bent to the ground for the winter under the snow

Pear on red mountain ash is much more durable. Northern pear varieties are planted on mountain ash where they can grow normally due to climatic conditions, but there is no way to find local wild pears for rootstocks.

Mountain ash, chokeberry and shrimp need moderately moist loose soil with acidity in the range of 5.5–7.0. Mountain ash and chokeberry are very photophilous and cannot tolerate too close (closer than 1.5–2 meters from the earth's surface) groundwater. Irga has a surface root system and can grow in groundwater 1 meter from the soil surface. In itself, the shrimp is relatively shade-tolerant, but to be used as a pear stock, it must be planted in well-lit places; in shading, vaccinations do not take root well and do not bear fruit.

My grandfather experimented with vaccinating varietal pears on young seedlings of wild red mountain ash taken from a nearby forest. These vaccinations took root well, but, unfortunately, due to the lack of space on the site, the experiments were carried out in the shadow of a huge apple tree, so we did not wait for pears on the mountain ash. But the grafted trees themselves existed in strong shading for more than a dozen years, giving almost no vertical growth or side branches.

Rowan, chokeberry and quail can be grown from seeds. They are extracted from fully ripened fruits (darling ripens in July - August, mountain ash and chokeberry in September - October), washed, slightly dried and stored in paper bags until sowing. The technology for growing their seedlings is similar to growing wild pear seedlings, but the depth of seed placement is only 1–2 centimeters.

Irgu and chokeberry can also be propagated by root offspring that appear near the bushes. They are carefully dug up in the early spring and transplanted to a permanent place. You can vaccinate the next year after transplantation.

It is recommended to leave 2-3 branches on each bush unvaccinated so that the plant does not die prematurely.


Varieties of TSHA pear varieties — Chizhovskaya, Lada, Moskvichka — are normally grafted onto ordinary forest mountain ash. You can try other varieties. Watering of mountain ash is important; otherwise, vaccinations do not grow well in drought, the root surface of rowan berries and grow in poor water conditions.

irisovi duh

I have a pear Quere on quince, beautiful not big trees and very productive.


The apple tree, as a stock, accepts most varieties of pears. Spring vaccination of a pear on a seedling of an apple tree by autumn can give a growth of more than a meter, and from each vaccination by August you can take more than a dozen buds for budding on the actual pear stock. He did such vaccinations only for overexposure of the variety, due to the temporary absence of pear stocks. At the remains of the design, the apple-pear tree, usually, in the second year, skeletal branches begin to be laid, in the third they bloom. In the fourth spring, the pear scion usually does not wake up.


The right choice of a suitable stock is one of the most important prerequisites for laying a fruit orchard. A variety of proven stocks for pears allows you to grow pear orchards and get high yields of delicious fruits in almost any region except the northernmost.


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