Pero Monteleone (local variety of pear)

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Pero Monteleone (local variety of pear)

Pero Monteleone (local variety of pear)

Pyrus communis L.


The fruits, of medium size (150 g), are spheroidal in shape with slight asymmetry in the longitudinal section. The position of the maximum diameter is in the equatorial area of the fruit, while the profile is convex. The peduncle is long and of medium thickness (although this character varies significantly between the different accessions observed). It has a generally weak or slightly more pronounced curvature and is inserted in an oblique position with respect to the axis of the fruit. When harvested, the sepals are divergent and the fruit, around the calyx cavity, has slight ribs. The peel is smooth or slightly rough. The background color is yellowish green and has an area of moderately extensive overcolor with an orange-red hue. The white pulp has a fine texture, is hard and compact and is medium juicy. The seeds have an elliptical shape.

Flowering occurs in the first ten days of April (first ten days of April for Abate Fetel). The fruit is harvested around the end of October, the beginning of November (second ten days of September for Abate Fetel) and the fruit is kept for several months.

With regard to the possible area of origin, it is traditionally linked to the town of Monteleone di Orvieto (TR) from which it takes its name. The first known mention of the variety was found in the 1585 work Herbario Novo by Castore Durante da Gualdo, where the author lists the pear varieties, including those of “montelione”. Based on the hypothesis formulated by Dr. Spedicato (author of the discovery), this quotation would support the thesis of an Umbrian origin of the variety. The work of Castore Durante is mostly a faithful copy of Pier Andrea Matthioli’s Discorsi (1544) and in the case in question, Durante reports the entire list of pear varieties as Matthioli, departing from it in two points, when he introduces the «bergamotte» and «di montelione» pears. Since Durante had Umbrian origins, it is presumable that he wanted to contextualize his work by linking it in some way to the territory known to him, inserting the varieties that he said characterized it or were more known or widespread there.

To date, no other citations have been found, not even by those Authors (Rossi F., Tonini S.) who at the beginning of the 20th century, for other varieties, provided useful and important ideas and information. Traditionally it was harvested around the end of October and the beginning of November, so the still immature fruits were tied in braids and then hung to allow them to ripen. Other traditional methods of conservation were in lofts above the straw or above the heap of grain.

This variety is present in various municipalities of Umbria, above all in the Province of Terni and especially in the Orvieto-Amerino area. Currently, several very ancient specimens have been identified in the Municipalities of Orvieto, Monteleone di Orvieto, Allerona, Ficulle, Castel Giorgio, Montecchio, Baschi, Guardea, Alviano, Amelia, Montecastrilli and Todi. It was certainly a variety that was once more widespread and cultivated while today the presence is mostly linked to very old specimens, isolated and scattered throughout the countryside.

Variety for consumption after cooking or after maturation in post-harvest, characterized by high shelf life in fruit cellars.

Texts taken from “Regional Register of Autochthonous Genetic Resources of the Umbria Region”