Flowering Quince - Chaenomeles speciosa - Zone 5
Flowering Quince is a medium sized deciduous or semi-evergreen shrub producing spectacular blossoms in early spring and highly underappreciated apple shaped fruit that make excellent preserves and add exquisite flavour and fragrance many dishes. Larger than its cousin the Japanese quince.
Flowering quince are rather fast-growing thorny shrubs native to China, Tibet, and Myanmar. They can reach heights of up to 3 metres and similar spreads. These shrubs have a dense, rounded form with spiky branches and glossy green leaves. They will produce vibrant pink blossoms up to 4 cm across in late winter, early spring. The exceptionally fragrant fruit are apple shaped, bright yellow and can be between 5 and 15 cm in diameter. They are highly adaptable plants, thriving in a variety of soil conditions including dry soil and heavy clay. They are also quite tolerant of at least partial shade. They will do best in moist, well-drained soils and will exhibit faster growth and more deeply coloured flowers when grown in full sun.
The flowering quince makes a better specimen shrub than its smaller cousin by virtue of its rounder, more upright growth habit. Its pink flowers and bright yellow fruit offer a nice complement to the dark glossy leaves, while the potent aroma of the fruit fill the landscape or the kitchen like a breath of tropical air. The fruit are rather bitter when eaten fresh but can be used in many cooked dishes to impart powerful flavour. Where they really shine is as a component in jams and jellies in which their high pectin levels aid the development of thick texture and the flesh adds dazzling flavour and bouquet. It has great potential for windbreak, hedge, and erosion control plantation.
|Height at maturity||2 metres (6.5 feet)|
|Spacing||1.5-2 metres (5-6 feet)|
|Sun / shade||adaptable (best in sun)|
|Average fruit weight|
|Years to bear fruit||3-4|
|Latin name||Chaenomeles speciosa|
|Average diameter of fruit|
|Also known as|