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Video: Pear In The North (part 1)
The time, place and circumstances of the introduction of the pear into culture are lost in the mists of time. The name of this culture is found in the languages of the most ancient inhabitants of Europe (Basques, Iberians, Etruscans, tribes that inhabited the coast of the Mediterranean Sea and Pontus), which testifies to the hoary antiquity of this culture.
According to the surviving archaeological evidence, its fruits were eaten by the ancient inhabitants of the territories of modern Greece, Italy, Germany, France, Switzerland and other countries of Southern and Central Europe.
The history of fruit growing testifies to the fact that the pear culture has known periods of rise, decline and prosperity. More than a thousand years before our era, Homer, in the seventh song of the Odyssey, eloquently described the garden of King Alkinoy in Theakia (modern island of Corfu), in which pears also grew. Six centuries later, the "father of botany" - Theophrastus (370-286 BC) points out the differences between wild and cultivated pears, gives the names of four highly reputable varieties, expounds the vast knowledge of the Greeks in the field of fruit growing.
The ancient Romans borrowed the pear culture from the Greeks. Cato the Elder (235-150 BC) describes six varieties of pears and numerous cultural practices. Pliny in the 1st century AD gives information about 41 varieties. It can be seen from his descriptions that the fruits were very diverse in size, shape, color and taste.
After the ancient Roman writers, information about the pear is lost for many centuries. The overwhelming majority of varieties created in Ancient Greece and Rome were irretrievably lost.
In France, which was destined to become the new cradle of pear culture, the first written mentions of it appear since the 9th century. Already in the "Capitulations" (laws) of Charlemagne, it is prescribed to breed "sweet, kitchen and late varieties." As in all of Europe, in France, for a long time, the main centers of fruit growing, including pear culture, were monasteries. The "golden age" of French fruit growing begins in the 17th century.
The pear begins to occupy the most honorable place in the gardens. Olivier de Serre, the "father of agriculture" in France, said that a garden without pears is not worthy of such a name. In 1628, in the collection of Le Lectier, whose name is associated with a brilliant strip in the history of the spread of pear culture in this country, there were about 260 varieties. By this time, the famous commercial fruit nurseries of the "Cartesian brothers", Leroy, Vilmorin, Balte and others, which won world fame, had emerged. Such outstanding varieties as Bere Bosc, Decanca du Comis, Decanca Winter were created in France, which still remain the standard of the highest quality. Therefore, it is not surprising that the French still consider the pear as their national fruit.
In the creation of dessert varieties of pears, the merits of Belgian breeders are extremely great. The beginning of extremely fruitful work on the development of new varieties was laid in the 18th century by Abbot Ardanpon, and the works of Van Mons (1765-1842) in the 19th century opened a truly brilliant era of the development of this culture. Van Mons has bred more than 400 varieties, many of which are still cultivated in gardens or used in world selection. According to the well-known expert on pear culture GA Rubtsov: "In one century in Belgium, more results have been achieved in terms of improving the pear than in the previous 19 centuries throughout the world." Here, along with France, is the birthplace of melting, oily pears "bere", which represent the highest gustatory perfection.
In England, the earliest information about culture dates back to the XII century, and already in the XIV century, the famous Warden pear, mentioned by Shakespeare, appeared. In the 17th century, the pear was more widespread here than the apple tree; its fruits served as a constant food product. There are descriptions of 65 varieties by various authors. In the second half of the 18th - early 19th century, under the influence of Belgium, interest in pears reached its peak. By 1826, 622 varieties were listed in the catalog of the Royal Horticultural Society. In England, such masterpieces of selection were bred, which received worldwide recognition, such as Williams and the Conference.
There was no pear in North America before the European settlers. It was brought there by the first colonists: the British to the eastern states of the United States and the French to Canada. In the first quarter of the 19th century, with the introduction of high-quality European varieties, an almost universal passion for pear culture began. In the famous pomological garden of Robert Manning in Massachusetts, nearly 1000 varieties of pears were harvested by 1842. In 1879, over 80 local varieties were specially imported from Russia to breed cold-resistant varieties in the United States. The USA has enriched the world assortment of pears with such varieties as Lyubimitsa Klappa, Kieffer, Sackle and many others.
The culture of pears in Ancient Rus began with monastic and princely gardens, mainly in its southwestern regions. During the Mongol-Tatar invasion, gardening in Russia fell into decay and was revived only with the transformation of the Moscow principality into a strong centralized state. By the 15th century, there were already many gardens around Moscow. The patriarchs and monastic gardens, called "paradise", were especially famous for the selected fruits. Adam Olearius testifies in his memoirs that in the 17th century excellent bulk apples, pears, cherries, plums, etc. were grown in Muscovy. The Moscow tsars collected the best varieties in their gardens. So, according to the inventory of the royal garden under Alexei Mikhailovich, there were, among others, 16 pears "Tsarsky and Voloshsky".
Peter I contributed to the spread of pear culture by laying gardens and exporting trees from abroad. By his orders, exemplary gardens appeared in St. Petersburg, Moscow, Voronezh, Derbent and other cities of the Russian Empire. In the first Russian pomology of A. T. Bolotov (1738-1833), entitled "Image and description of different species of apples and pears born in noblemen's, and partly in other orchards," 622 apple varieties and 39 pear varieties are described.
At the beginning of the 19th century, about 70 varieties of pears were grown in Russia, of which 14 were in the northern latitudes. In the 1830s, the introduction of high-quality Western European varieties of pears began in the Crimea, and in the 1880s, here and in other southern provinces with favorable climatic conditions, widespread industrial cultivation of this culture arose. A significant contribution to the promotion and implementation of pear culture was made by such luminaries of domestic fruit growing as I. V. Michurin, L. P. Simirenko, V. V. Pashkevich, R. I. Shroder, M. V. Rytov, N. N. Betling, E. A. Regel, R. E. Regel, G. A. Rubtsov and many others.
The evolution of the pear culture has gone a long way - from wild, tart, full of stony cells, with a slightly better taste than a forest acorn, pears have turned into fruits, the pulp of which melts in the mouth like butter, the highest perfection of taste, "fruit of fruit", according to the figurative definition of the French. The pear, yielding to the apple in popularity, has found its definite place in the orchards of the North-West and adjacent regions of Russia. Fresh fruits and pear processing products make food more balanced, since it increases the content of easily digestible carbohydrates, organic acids, P-active substances and ascorbic acid, the lack of which is a significant cause of premature aging. Pear fruits are used for the preparation of dried fruits, candied fruits, jam, preserves, compotes, juice, blending of wines, including sparkling wines (like champagne), etc.
Since ancient times, pears have been used in folk medicine. They are characterized by a fixing, diuretic, disinfectant, antipyretic and antitussive effect. They are especially useful for the treatment and prevention of kidney and urinary tract diseases due to the content of arbutin - 200-300 g of pear pulp provide its therapeutic effect. The sugar content in pears grown in the Northwest region is 7-12%. Of the organic acids, malic and citric acids are found in them. The total acidity of the fruit is usually low (0.1-1%). Substances with P-vitamin activity - 0.2-1%, ascorbic acid - 3-11 mg / 100 g of fresh fetal weight.
Description of the plant
The pear belongs to the genus Pyrus L., a member of the Rosaceae Juss family. On the territory of Russia, in its Central zone, three species are found, in the North Caucasus - about 20 and in the Far East - 1. The northern border of pear culture runs along the line: St. Petersburg - Yaroslavl - Nizhny Novgorod - Ufa - Orenburg.
The growth and yield of pears largely depend on the quality of the soil. It must be structural and fertile. In principle, the pear tolerates any soil in which normal root growth is possible. The only exceptions are sandy, waterlogged and gravelly. However, the consistency of the pulp, taste and aroma of the fruit depend on the properties of the soil to a greater extent than that of other fruit crops. Soil fertility is essential. The pear grows best on slightly acidic and neutral, rather loose soils. Waterlogging makes it difficult for the roots to absorb iron, and the trees develop chlorosis.
The pear tree is demanding for moisture at a young age, since at this time its taproot has very few root lobes. As the roots grow, they reach a considerable depth, so the pear tolerates the lack of moisture better than other crops and reacts negatively to its excess in the lower soil layers. With prolonged waterlogging, the roots die off, so it is necessary to maintain a normal water regime. To eliminate excess moisture, drainage (drainage) of the soil and cultural tinning (sowing of herbs) are used.
Growth, absorption of mineral substances by roots, metabolism, respiration, assimilation, the rate of passage of phenological phases, etc. depend on temperature. Pear, in comparison with apple, is a more thermophilic and less winter-hardy culture, which led to its less spread in the gardens of the North-West and other regions with more severe climatic conditions. Cultivation of Western European and Baltic varieties is considered unreliable where frosts reach -26 ° C and below. Frosts - 30… - 35 ° C are tolerated only by the most winter-hardy Central Russian varieties of folk and domestic selection, in the origin of which the descendants of the most frost-resistant species on earth - the Ussuri Pear, which can withstand temperatures down to -50 ° C, often participated.
It should be borne in mind that the nature of winter damage depends on the age of the tree, its condition, harvest load in the previous year, compatibility of the variety with the stock and agricultural technology. Young pear trees in the first 2-3 years of growth in the garden are more sensitive to frost due to damage to the roots when digging from the nursery. When entering the season of fruiting, their resistance to frost increases slightly, and then decreases again. Moreover, the frost resistance of different parts of the tree is not the same, for example, the critical temperatures are: for branches - 25 … 23 ° C, for vegetative buds -30 … -35 ° C, for flower buds -25 … -30 ° C, for opened flower buds -4 ° C, for flowers -2.3 ° C, for ovaries -1.2 ° C and for the root system -8 … 10 ° C. The winter-spring period is especially dangerous due to intense sunlight on cloudless days,when from the sunny side the stem and skeletal branches are heated and they quickly cool at night. At the same time, frost resistance decreases by 20-40%, especially in cambium and bark.
The pear belongs to the light-loving plants, therefore, when there is insufficient light, the trees reduce their yield. With favorable lighting, the tree shows a smaller development of the crown in height and greater in width, less bare branches. The pear makes the greatest demands on light during the flowering period and during the formation of fruits. Lack of lighting causes underdevelopment of flower buds and weak color of the fruit. Therefore, when planting in a garden, plants should be placed in such a way as to provide better illumination.
When choosing a place for a pear, she needs to take the most protected corner on the site. It, more than other fruit crops, requires warm, sheltered from the prevailing winds. Particular attention should be paid to the topography of the site, the elimination of microdepressions, in which water stagnates and soil compaction occurs. After all, this usually leads to the death of trees.
The limited size of the plot in horticulture dictates the need for economical use of the allotted area. To provide a family of 5-6 people with fresh apples and pears throughout the year, as well as products of their processing, it is recommended to have 10 apple trees and 2-3 pear trees on the site. As a rule, they are planted together in a single array at a distance of 5-6 m between rows and 3.5-4 m in a row. The rows themselves are placed in the direction from south to north, closer to the western side of the site. This landing pattern provides the best lighting conditions.
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Pear in the North:
part 1, part 2, part 3, part 4, part 5