Showing images available in: United States
GAP Gardens - Homepage

Select Required Country


Focus on Chaenomeles - Flowering Quinces

These early-flowering beauties belong to the Chaenomeles genus, known commonly as flowering or Japanese quinces.


GAP Photos/Nicola Stocken

Feature No:   5018 

Qty of Images:    63 


© All images subject to Copyright.
Images available for use by license only.

In the depths of winter when most plants are slumbering, it is a rather nondescript shrub that reveals the most remarkable flowers, living jewels that brighten the gloomiest day. Small in stature but with an unmistakeable presence, these flowering quinces steal silently onto the garden scene as their tightly furled buds burst forth on bare branches, displaying the most beautiful blooms in pearly pastels or sizzling shades. And on closer inspection, there nestling within a petticoat of petals lies a boss of gold-tipped stamens, a vital nectar source for pollinating insects. Originating from mountainous woodland in Asia, Chaenomeles were initially identified as pears until an eighteenth century South Africa botanist, Christaan Persoon, assigned them to the Cydonia, or quince, family, despite their obvious differences. After languishing for a few years, John Lindley, secretary of the Royal Horticultural Society, established the genus Chaenomeles which derives from the Greek words chaino meaning to split, and melos, an apple, an incongruous name that arose from the mistaken belief that the fruit split. The Chaenomeles family consists of just four species of deciduous, often spiny shrubs that flower during late winter and spring, brightening beds and borders as single specimens, thriving in pots, growing readily up walls and fences, or forming low, dense and impenetrable hedges. Chaenomeles cathayensis is vigorous, a small tree growing more than three metres in either direction, whilst C. japonica matures into a one-metre-high, thorny shrub, spreading several metres. C. speciosa, on the other hand, stand at about 2.5 metres tall and stretches up to five metres tall, and finally, C. thibetica (unavailable in the UK), a very thorny shrub or small tree that bears poisonnous fruit. Dozens of these beautiful flowers are displayed in David Ford's garden, in his Plant Heritage National Collection of Chaenomeles cultivars.



CONNECT WITH US            
+44 (0)1376 571283
[email protected]
Sign-Up for Newsletter

  © GAP Photos Ltd, All Rights Reserved