Native to China
cold hardy to zone 5
A deciduous tree with beautiful exfoliating bark. The old bark peels off in patches similar to a Crepe Myrtle, revealing shades of gray, green, orange or yellow.
Fruit ripens in mid to late autumn
One can grow a Chinese Quince bonsai from seed. This takes time, but growing 'misho' bonsai is economical and rewarding. Now is the time to collect the Karin seed. The fruit should be overripe before harvesting.
A row of seed in a halved Chinese Quince fruit
Sow Chinese Quince seed outdoors in the Fall and let Mother Nature take care of the stratification. Protect them from rodents (squirrels and mice) and label that “empty pot of soil”.
The fruit emits a sweet aroma
Stored seed requires 3 months cold stratification. Remove fleshy coating on seeds before storing. Stratification is a period of artificial winter that trees that are not tropical need to set off the internal clock that spring triggers and makes seed sprout as temperatures rise. Chinese Quince seed will need 90 days of cold storage to begin to sprout. This can be done in the home refrigerator. Use zip-lock sandwich bags with damp peat moss. A fungicide can be used in the media to keep soil borne diseases from killing the seedlings. If any of the seed germinate in the refrigerator, plant them.
When the artificial winter is over, the seeds are ready to be planted. It is suggested that they be soaked overnight in room temperature water to improve germination percentages. Seeds that float after soaking won't germinate so toss them out.
Seed in fruit
The edible fruit makes delicious jam and jelly. Chinese Quince cooked with apples is delightful. The yellow medium-size fruit is hard and is suitable for pickling and can be made into a tea. It ripens in mid to late autumn The fruits emit a sweet aroma and are placed in a bowl to impart a delightful spicy scent to a room.
Flowers from April to May
5 light pink petals 1 to 2 inches across
Chinese Quince flowers from April to May with 5 light pink petals 1 to 2 inches across, appearing in spring on last years growth, so heavy pruning is best avoided.
Pseudocydonia sinensis BonsaiUS National Arboretum