Choose a country to see content specific to your location

A picture of a Quince

Quince

Cydonia oblonga

Also known as

Kweper (Afr.), Common quince

Quitte Cydonia oblonga-2 by Dietrich Krieger (CC BY-SA 3.0)

Full Sun
Moderate care
Moderate watering
Frost Hardy

8a

USDA zone

-12°C

Minimum temperature

Expected size

Height
Spread

4m

Max

4m

2.5m

Min

2.5m

10 years to reach maturity

Fruiting

  • spring
  • summer
  • autumn
  • winter

Quinces are harvested in the autumn and can be left to ripen on the tree.

More images of Quince

Cydonia oblonga - Quince, Mersin 2016-11-20 01-1
Cydonia oblonga vaisius, 2006-10-18
Fleurs-et-feuilles-de-cognassier
A photo of Quince

Quince Overview

A Quince is a small deciduous tree, growing 5-8 m high and 4-6 m wide, that bears a pome fruit, similar in appearance to a pear, and bright golden-yellow when mature. The fruit is 7 to 12 cm long and 6 to 9 cm across. Throughout history the cooked fruit has been used as food, but the tree is also grown for its attractive pale pink blossoms and other ornamental qualities. The immature fruit is green with dense grey-white pubescence, most of which rubs off before maturity in late autumn when the fruit changes colour to yellow with hard, strongly perfumed flesh. The alternate leaves are simple, 6–11 cm long, with an entire margin and densely pubescent with fine white hairs. The flowers, produced in spring after the leaves, are white or pink with five petals. In Turkey, the expression ayvayı yemek (literally "to eat the quince") is used as a derogatory term indicating any unpleasant situation or a malevolent incident to avoid. This usage is likened to the rather bitter aftertaste of a quince fruit inside the mouth.

Common problems with Quince

Quinces can also suffer from Leaf blight (Diplocarpon mespili).

Quince Companion Plants

How to propagate Quince

Cuttings

Take hardwood cuttings 15 to 30 cm in length in winter or early spring, dip into rooting hormone powder and plant in moistened horticultural sand, 8 to 10 cm into the sand. Because the cuttings take months to root and need to be kept moist, this soilless medium helps prevent rot and encourage drainage. Keep cuttings in a warm area with bright light until spring, when you can plant them out into trenches 15 cm apart. Cuttings should be rooted and well established in year.

Seed

Sowing time - Winter; Spacing - 4-6cm apart; Sowing depth - double the seed size. Graft the desired cultivar onto the growing quince sapling when about 1-2cm thick.

Layering

Layering is done in spring and left for a full year before being removed from the mother plant.

Special features of Quince

Hedge plant

Small trees with an untidy tangle of branches that resist formal training, the Quince makes a great hedge screen in any garden. Popular in old days to plait the branches to make beautiful hedges.

Attractive flowers

Flower buds are pink, and lighten when opening to an almost white colour.

Attractive fruits

Other uses of Quince

The fruits can be eaten raw or cooked.

Edible

Fruits are almost never eaten raw, but stewed, preserved and made into jellies and jams with pink colour developing when cooked.

Rootstock

Quince seedlings can be used as rootstock for pear trees.