The Quince (Cydonia oblonga) is the sole member of the genus Cydonia in the family Rosaceae (which also contains apples and pears, among other fruits). It is a deciduous tree that bears a fruit which is similar to a pear and turns a bright golden-yellow when mature.
Throughout history the cooked fruit has been used as food, but the tree is also grown for its attractive pale pink blossoms and other ornamental qualities.
The tree grows 5 to 8m high and 4 to 6m wide. The fruit is approx. 7 to 12cm long and 6 to 9cm across.
A large pear shaped old European variety that is largest in the middle and tapers at both ends. It stews well and becomes a deep crimson when cooked. Mix one Portugal Quince with a dozen apples and you can make a pink sauce with a delicious pineapple like quince flavor.
The Quince is a native fruit tree to Persia resembling a cross between an apple and a pear. This ancient fruit of antiquity was prized by Greeks and Romans alike. The fruit is very fragrant and has a balanced sweet-tart flavor that is excellent for jellies or preserves.
The trees are now grafted and grown on a semi-dwarf root stock only allowing the tree to reach 4-6m. The native ungrafted trees can get twice as big. The Quince is an excellent fruit for large wildlife such as deer. The delicious aroma can be sensed from long distances.
Quince are rather firm and are usually cut into thin slices and eaten or used for culinary delights such as preserves, pies or pastry tarts.