Monday, 23 April 2012

Santa Claus - keeping test

I'd planned to keep my last few of Santa Claus's until Easter to test how late they would keep, but then forgot all about them. Today I noticed the neck of one was browning off so I decided to try them. I know now that they would have benefitted from being wrapped in tissue to stop them drying out, so will do that next year but, appearances aside, they were still quite edible. I thought they would probably have just gone brown at the core but no, the flesh was still quite firm. The taste was slightly vinous, very much like an Asian pear that is slightly over-ripe. 

I'm now quite impressed with this variety, I like firm pears with a tendency to crispness and the taste is also good. They are much later than the catalogues suggest, I don't think the first one was even ready in January and with care, they will keep in reasonable condition until April. The only down-side is that the variety is rather prone to scab, so needs a sheltered location that also has good ventilation, quite a challenge. I had given up on the cordon planted against a south-facing fence as the fruit were perennially riddled with scab lesions, but planting an additional tree I'd grafted into a more exposed position in my south-west facing front garden has been a lot more successful.