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Apple and Pear (Pyrus)


  • Leaves on native species are small, alternate, and pointed. May be unlobed or have several lobes on the same leaf.
  • Fruit is a pome (apple) and varies in size by species; typically very small on native species.
  • Leaves commonly borne on spur shoots.
  • Some call apples Malus and pears Pyrus.


Apples and pears are commonly - but not always - grouped into the same genus because their fruits are so similar. While both are easy to recognize from their flowers and fruits, they are more difficult to recognize from just their leaves. In addition, wild apples and pears commonly have different leaves from their relatives that we find in orchards and yards.

Although apples and pears are grown throughout Oregon for ornamental and commercial purposes, only one species is native to Oregon, western crab apple - the rest have been introduced.

For more information on the apple native to the Pacific Northwest, go to the species page or see "Trees to Know in Oregon".

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