Shipova and pear hybrids

as is known, I have a fondness for the many interesting hybrids as rowan and its relatives can form with other genera within the family Rosaceae. A favorite among these is the plant called Shipova and that is a hybrid between whitebeam (Sorbus aria) and pears (Pyrus communis) or snöpäron (Pyrus nivalis) with the botanical name x Sorbopyrs auricularia. It is a natural crossover that certainly has occurred in many places around Europe, but because they rarely produce viable seeds and sometimes completely seedless (som Shipova) the thanks only man able to multiply and spread to fruktentusiasters gardens across half the globe. Right Ship above is believed to originate from Serbia. I became aware of Shipova ever since I read in a book that it was the rarest among the rare fruits [1]. We have three copies of Putt Myra forest garden, but it is probably a decade to go before they will set fruit for the first time.

Shipovaträdet is beautiful, with a straight, through strain, good branch angles and a rather sparse branches, which allows it to work well in the forest garden context. The leaves are silvery when young and gives a beautiful impression in early summer.

When I was visiting a friend outside Gothenburg, I received a taste of my first Shipova, from his trees began to bear fruit 14 years after planting. The fruit was almost spherical, with yellow-orange peel and without seeds. It tasted sweet and juicy, and reminded the fact a lot of the tastiest sand pears (Pyrus pyrifolia), som ävenkallas nashipäron, I have eaten. These are unfortunately only hardy to zone II or III and thus ship above a good alternative to them. Ship above must be propagated vegetatively and we've seeded them on both ordinary rowan (Sorbus aucuparia), pear (Pyrus communis) and a dwarf pear rootstock called Pyro Dwarf, in the hope of speeding up the fruit set something. It should also be inoculated onto whitebeam (Sorbus intermedia).

Shipovaträdets fruit in all its glory. It tastes like a sweet and juicy Asian Pear, but is hardier than the.

Besides Shipova there are other pear hybrids and now it gets really messy. Sometimes said to plant Bollwillerpäron be the same as Shipova (such as here), but it is not. Bollwillerpäronet get small fruit and is a fruit that has quite a long history. It is already mentioned in documents from the 1500s and derives from the castle in the small town of Bollwiller in Alsace [2]. It has been kept alive over the centuries by the transfer of scions from one tree to another. The fruits are a few cm, has red skin and yellow flesh and the taste is described as pleasant and like pears. Unlike Shipova produces Bollwillerpäronet a cored and seeds, but most of them tend to be sterile.

Another kind one can encounter called 'Smokvarka', whose name means "fikonlik”. In all probability, however, it is identical to Shipova.

Another intriguing hybrid is kind Baciu II, coming from an experimental cultivation in Baciu outside the city of Cluj-Napoca in Romania. Although it is believed to be a hybrid between snöpäron (Pyrus nivalis) and whitebeam (Sorbus aria). Its fruits are in terms of size in between Shipova and Bollwillerpäron.

Three molar-pear hybrids. Immature bollwillerpäron to plants, Baciu II above and Shipova bottom. Various crossings have thus given rise to quite different fruits. Source: FruitsSeeker

The question then is how to get the plants. I have found three nurseries in Europe that have one or more of these in its range and all send to Sweden:

If you have any of these in your garden and got fruit? Get in touch with me, I want to know more!


[1] Reich, L. and L. Reich, Uncommon fruits for every garden. Portland: Timber Press, 2008.

[2] Wimmer, IT., The Boll Weiler pear × Sorbopyrus irregularis (Münchh.) C.A.Wimm. : History and nomenclature Zandera, 29(2): p. 58-69, 2014.

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3 thoughts on “Shipova and pear hybrids”

  • Et treSorbopyrus auricularisBollwillerpære vokser i Botanisk Hage i Oslo, den bærer stort sett årvisst og rikt. En avlegger er plantet på Torblå I Ulvik – Norway, har ikke båret frukt ennå (ca 15 years) Sorbopyrus cf bulbiformis , er også plantet i Ulvik og har ennå ikke båret frukt.

    • Tack för kommentaren Geir! Har du möjligtvis någon bild på frukterna på trädet i Oslo? Det skulle vara intressant att jämföra med hur sorten Shipova ser ut.
      All's Well!

      • Sorbopyrus auricularis – “rognepærei Oslohar jeg ikke bilde av. Men etter minnet, så er pærene i klaser som rogne-/ asalbær (rønn/oxel-). De ser ut helt like på de små pærene til venstre på illustrasjonen her på bloggen din, possibly a little more color yellow red, possibly slightly more tapered toward the stem end, but it can certainly vary by year and how big is klasene….. I believe that it is the same clone…

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