March Blooms in my Georgia Garden: Flowering Quince

When the bare branches of Flowering Quince burst into bloom, I know spring is coming soon. We grow 4 different varieties of Flowering Quince, and all of them are spectacularly showy when in bloom.  Flowering Quince is now in full bloom in our Georgia garden, but flowers began opening well before winter was over. 

Quince Toyo-nishiki
Bright red blooms of the Texas Scarlet Flowering Quince are the first to open in our Georgia garden. Soon after, the salmon-pink flowers of Cameo appear. Scarff's Red is another red blooming Quince that has an upright habit and is nearly thornless. Scarff's Red is a large shrub up to 10 feet tall. Jet Trail is a low-growing Quince with white blooms. My favorite Flowering Quince is Toyo-nishiki with its white, pink, and red blooms all on the same plant. This is another large Quince up to 6 feet tall at maturiy.

Flowering Quince is a thorny shrub that is an excellent barrier plant if you need that quality in a plant. Some varieties bear a small crop of 2-3 inch fruits much like an apple that can be made into jelly, but I never see more than 3 or 4 fruits on my small plants. Birds and other wildlife will eat the fruits, so I just leave them.

When not in bloom, Flowering Quince sort of disappears into the landscape with its scraggly branches, but when in bloom, it will knock your socks off. Birds love to build their nests in the protection of the spiny stems. 

Flowering Quince is one of the most drought tolerant shrubs we grow. We have several plants in our roadside garden bed that I cannot water at all. 

Plant your Flowering Quince in full sun for good flowering. I mistakenly situated some of my Quince plants in too much shade where they have not grown or flowered well.

Noteworthy Features of Flowering Quince:
  • Red-flowered quince attracts hummingbirds
  • Virtually maintenance-free
  • Attracts wildlife
  • Drought tolerant
  • Edible fruits in summer
  • Winter blooms
Everyone in the United States can have Flowering Quince in the garden, since it is hardy in USDA Zones 4-10.

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