Py4 – Pear ‘Doyenne d’Été’ (‘Summer Doyenne’) (??)


Species: Pyrus communis
Use: Dessert pear
Ploidy: ??
Pollination Group: C / 3
Cultivar Group: 3 or 4
Bearing: Spur
Blossom: (notes to follow)
Season: Late July – early August
More Info: Keepers / OrangePippin / Joan Morgan

Tree Source: Pete Nichol, Northern Fruit Group
Rootstock: Quince ‘A’
Planting Size: Small feathered maiden
Planting Date: 8th February 2018


August 2020 – Pear ‘Doyenné d’Été’
August 2020 – Pear ‘Doyenné d’Été’ fruit showing symptoms of pear scab
August 2020 – Pear ‘Doyenne d’Été’ fruit, showing symptoms of pear scab

Notes & Observations

N.B. (updated Oct 2022) – I’m really not sure the pear we’re growing is actually the ‘Doyenne d’été’. All the sources describe it as the earliest-ripening summer pear, with descriptions that specify a bright green pear ripening to yellow. This pear, however, is distinctly late-ripening, possibly a cooker, as it’s still (Oct 22nd) very hard and definitely un-ripe. It was originally supplied as ‘Buerre d’été’, which according to online research doesn’t actually exist as a known variety, and the ‘Buerre’ element would also suggest a dessert pear, specifically one that ripened in the summer (“d’été”).

Background – There’s some confusion online as to the origin of this heritage pear variety, with some sources saying it was raised by Van Mons in the early 1800s. But Edward A. Bunyard says, in his 1920 book A Handbook of Hardy Fruits More Commonly Grown in England: “Origin, raised by the Capucin Monks at Mons about 1700. Hogg attributes this wrongly. The words “par nous” used by Van Mons are by no means always applied to his own seedlings. Beurre Diel, for example is thus noted, meaning that it was named by him. For its earliness and fertility it should be included in every garden.”

Season 2019 – Reasonably strong growth but very little blossom and therefore no fruit to speak of.

7.5.20 – Masses of blossom, fruit seems to have set well, thinning will be required.

13.8.20 – A lot of fruit did set, but they were all of very small size and afflicted by a truly horrible case of pear scab that ruined every single fruit. Very sparse leaf cover, also signs of pear rust.

Season 2020 – Not a happy tree. I’ve done my best to clear away as many fallen leaves as possible in the hope this will help prevent the fungal spores from re-infecting this tree or the rest of the orchard. Removal (or spraying) may be the only other option if it doesn’t improve in 2021.

Winter 2021 – Pronounced lean developing and quite congested – re-staking needed. Removed 1 large upright to reduce weight and improve air-flow.

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