“A Papple a Day Keeps the Doctor…Baffled.” That’s one of the marketing slogans for a new fruit variety developed in New Zealand.
Why is the doctor baffled? Because the variety, which looks every bit like an apple, is not an apple at all. It is actually a hybrid of European and Asian pears. The fruit is round with a red-orange blush over a yellow background. It is crunchy and juicy, like an Asian pear, but has the more robust flavor of a European pear. It ripens on the tree but has a long shelf life and stores well.
The Papple (whose cultivar name is Prem109) was bred by Plant and Food Research in New Zealand, where it is being grown. It is being commercialized by the joint venture company Prevar Limited, which licensed the global marketing rights to the Associated International Group of Nurseries.
In turn, AIGN has licensed use of the Papple trademark in the United Kingdom to Worldwide Fruit, an international fruit marketing and distribution company that supplies apples and pears to major U.K. retailers. Worldwide Fruit imports New Zealand Papples and plans to plant 15,000 Papple trees in the United Kingdom within the next two years.
Worldwide Fruit is owned by Fruition Producer Organisation and Enzafruit New Zealand (UK), Ltd.
I have had a Papple tree, variety “sweet Johnny”for two years. it was a good size when I purchased it from the warehouse so not sure of its age. So far it gets lots of blossom which all falls off along with the stems and has no fruit. Just how old does the tree have to be before it bears fruit? It is professionally espaliered on my fence and pollinated by my bee hive.
Mine does that as well. Same age, three years on. One fruit so far.
I have just discovered this website – I have two Sweet Johnny trees here in NZ, I think I have discovered that the papple is like blueberries – they hate drying out. Even being dry for 24 hours makes them throw a sulking fit and drop all their flowers or immature fruits. I have watered and mulched them this (Southern Hemisphere) Summer and finally after 2 years they both – rather reluctantly – had 3 papples each. Very crunchy and juicy but, to be honest, I would rather have either a good tangy apple or a sweet melting pear – they aren’t a particularly exciting fruit, However! I am keeping them both in my mini orchard because they have stunning deep maroon Autumn colour. So the Spring blossom and Autumn colour has saved their lives – otherwise the fruit alone isn’t worth them taking up space (in my opinion)>
I purchased a Sweet Johnny (Papple) from Warehouse last year. The “tree” is very thin and tiny (really hard to call it a tree as it is only 1m tall). The blossom is beautiful, but the tree is so tiny that I didn’t have any expectation on it for the first year. Surprisingly, end up I got 2 Papple fruits, after planted for a few months. I guess I have planted it near other pear trees that helps for pollination.
My sweet Johnny has been a prolific fruiter in 2018 and 2019. Was planted 2018. Like all pears you have to be mean to get fruit.branches must be staked horizontally and I have another nashi planted next to it for pollination. Needs twice weekly watering and I feed it worm wee 3 to 4 times per year. Such a beautiful tree and fruit is so sweet and delicious.
Hi I live in Gerringong nsw Australia I’ve been looking to buy a papple tree does anyone know where I could purchase one please
Hi Dianne, I have some that I’ve grown from seed. They are only about 20cm high at this stage, but will grow quickly. If you happen to come to Tassie at some stage I’d be happy to share.