More info on a "Chinese" quince?

amatbrewer

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On impulse this spring I picked up a quince ($15) that looked like it might make an interesting cluster or storybook style tree some day...if I don't screw it up or kill it (which are much more likely).
When I asked abut what kind of quince it was all they could tell me was it is "Chinese".

I took it home and hacked the crap out of it, did some heavy root pruning, and some initial wiring mostly to expose the inner foliage/buds to sunlight (I expect to remove a lot of the current branches in the next year or two). To my amazement, despite what I did, and a spring with some of the worst aphid and spider mites I have ever experienced, it not only survived but is growing like crazy. It even flowered!?!? Now I am beginning to think more long term.

So if anyone can help narrow down what kind of quince it might be I would be very grateful.
Sorry for the quality of the picture but this is the best picture I have that show the leaves, bark, and flowers.
Please ignore the crappy wiring...One of many bad habits I am trying to overcome.

Also, is my assumption valid, that I should plan to remove any fruit it produces again next year to help reduce stress and quicken its development?

20190421_163522.jpg
 

0soyoung

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I think you have a red chaenomeles (aka Japanese quince) and not a Chinese quince (pseudocydonia), but your pic isn't the best for identification purposes.

Aphids are not picky. Any succulent growth will do. It only needs to be young and soft growth for them to be able to plug their little stylets into a phloem tube, so don't be flattered by them. Besides, they most likely were put there by ants. What the hell spider mites do and why they are around beats me. It is all better than conks (polypores) growing on it, though, and about that you should be proud.

Just twist off the spent flower, if it doesn't fall off on its own.
 

Gsquared

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Look at the bark on the oldest part of the trunk. If it is a Chinese quince, and old enough, it should have flaky bark that comes off in flakes and leaves a pretty mottled trunk in brown, grey, olive green, reddish tan. And generally (please note I say GENERALLY, before you start posting pics of multi trunk Chinese quinces to prove otherwise), Chinese quince form more tree like shapes, as where Japanese quince tend to have multiple trunks and is more bush like. I can’t exactly tell from the flowers n yours, but Chinese quince have smaller, less conspicuous flowers (at least mine did before I sold it) and Japanese are showier flowers. Color on yours looks right for Chinese but it looks a little large to me.
 

amatbrewer

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Aphids are not picky. Any succulent growth will do. It only needs to be young and soft growth for them to be able to plug their little stylets into a phloem tube, so don't be flattered by them. Besides, they most likely were put there by ants. What the hell spider mites do and why they are around beats me. It is all better than conks (polypores) growing on it, though, and about that you should be proud.
With all the agriculture in the area as well as oak, birch, elm, maple and assorted fruit trees in the neighborhood not cared for I think Yakima may be the worlds source of aphids. But this year seamed especially bad.
polypores?!?! What? Oh great, like I need something else to worry about...I think I am going to take you off my x-mas card list for that. ;-)
 

amatbrewer

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Look at the bark on the oldest part of the trunk. If it is a Chinese quince, and old enough, it should have flaky bark that comes off in flakes and leaves a pretty mottled trunk in brown, grey, olive green, reddish tan. And generally (please note I say GENERALLY, before you start posting pics of multi trunk Chinese quinces to prove otherwise), Chinese quince form more tree like shapes, as where Japanese quince tend to have multiple trunks and is more bush like. I can’t exactly tell from the flowers n yours, but Chinese quince have smaller, less conspicuous flowers (at least mine did before I sold it) and Japanese are showier flowers. Color on yours looks right for Chinese but it looks a little large to me.
I don't think it is old enough for the flaky bark and almost all of the batch at the nursery had multiple trunks. The more I read along with these responses, I am also leaning towards it begin a Japanese quince.

One thing I forgot to mention, if it matters it pushed a LOT of suckers. At one point I was cutting off suckers every couple of days.
 

amatbrewer

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Thanks for all the responses. Very glad I asked.
 

Paulpash

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FWIW, Quince, as you can probably see already, throw ramrod straight canes. Your wire will struggle to create significant movement when it gets this thick. The best strategy is to cut back very hard into old wood when it's dormant. It will backbud profusely. Wire movement into the new shoots and you will get a much more interesting branch structure. This is what I did to mine... IMG_20160921_165925943_zps4or9sx8j.jpg
 

amatbrewer

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FWIW, Quince, as you can probably see already, throw ramrod straight canes. Your wire will struggle to create significant movement when it gets this thick. The best strategy is to cut back very hard into old wood when it's dormant. It will backbud profusely. Wire movement into the new shoots and you will get a much more interesting branch structure. This is what I did to mine...
That is good to know.
It was what I was already doing/planning so it is nice to know I might be going in the right direction. [sometimes even a blind squirrel finds a nut]
I did find out just how far I can bend the mature branches before they break (oops, good thing I was not planning to keep that one anyway) but also that even after breaking it, not only did it not die off, but in fact grew vigorously?!?!
Since I know it has nothing to do with any skills I might have (because I don't), I can only conclude that these things are very hearty, and forgiving.

This is one of those trees that I have no aspirations will ever be good 'bonsai' but I do find it pleasing to look at and work with. And you never know I just might get lucky.
BTW I know this is controversial, but I do bonsai in the same way I make beer. I make what I like. If it pleases others that is great, but as long as I find it enjoyable it is enough for me. That does is not to say I don't prefer if others liked it as well (I am not that arrogant), but that is not a determining factor of if I like it or not. And with beer, if no one else likes it...then that is all the more for me. WOOT!

And since I am already going down the proverbial rabbit hole...I want to thank all the dedicated and talented people who put so much into BN. I know I have little that I am able to contribute here, certainly far less than I gain. So I am quite grateful to all those who are on the other side of that equation.
 

Paulpash

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With enough time, wire and determination you can make a pleasant tree from Quince, exactly because it's so forgiving. I'd say your starting point isn't massively different than mine was ... Just stick with it :) Quince_Jan_2013_zpse8f292b2.jpg
 

amatbrewer

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Quince2019.jpg
Not a great pix but I did not take it with the intent of sharing. Also ignore the 'putting green' in the front. I was looking for a spot to put some moss from another pot and have not gotten around to finding a home for it. You can't tell from this pix but that is actually a deep oval pot.
There is a lot going on with the base of this and as I mentioned most of the wire is just to open it up and see where I get back budding and build strength (being my first quince I want to see how it reacts and what I can/can't do). Like I mentioned I hacked it back about as far as I dared at the time. A couple of the secondary trunks have no movement but I expect I will end up cutting them back to a low branch and regrowing them, or replacing them entirely with some of the many suckers that pop up.
This winter I will start considering what direction I might want to go with it. Initially it has a kind of storybook vibe and I am considering that, but it would probably need a lot more girth to the main trunk to pull off, so I might have to settle for a clump/raft style. But I am open to all ideas and suggestions. (Seeing a trees potential is probably my biggest weakness)
 
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