Colin Mills, compiler of the Hortus Camdenensis, died in late November 2012 after a short illness. As he always considered the Hortus his legacy, it is his family's intention to keep the site running in perpetuity. It will not, however, be updated in the near future.

Pyrus communis ‘Beurré Berkmans’

‘Fruit medium sized, turbinate. Skin of a rich lemon-yellow colour, thickly covered all over with russety specks and dots, but round the stalk and over the crown it is completely covered with a coat of cinnamon-coloured russet. Eye open, set in a round furrowed basin. Stalk an inch long, inserted without depression. Flesh white, tender, fine-grained, juicy, sugary, and richly flavoured. A handsome and very excellent pear, ripe in November and December. The tree makes a handsome pyramid, and is a good bearer.’ [Hogg – Fruit Manual p.160/1860].

Horticultural & Botanical History

‘Gained by Alexandre Bivort, Louvain, Bel.’ [Pears of New York p.287]. It appears to have been bred by Bivort and first fruited by him in 1847. I have no other information on the history of this pear. It was figured in Album de Pomologie [ADP vol.2, pl.125/1849], the illustration used here.


History at Camden Park

Listed only in the 1857 catalogue in an Addendum as ‘Beurré Berkman’s’ [Pear no.41/1857]. In a copy of the 1857 catalogue the number ‘41’ is changed to ‘44’ and this aligns with the diary numbering. ‘44.  Sugary, perfumed of highest excellence.’ [Diary B, MP A2951/1862]. Obtained from Veitch’s Nursery, probably the original Exeter premises.


Published May 19, 2010 - 04:36 PM | Last updated Jul 22, 2011 - 01:48 PM

Figured are 2 pears with shoot and leaves, one green the other yellow and heavily russeted. Album de Pomologie pl.125, 1849.

Pear ‘Beurré Berkmans’ | ADP vol.2, pl.125/1849 | Pomologische Bibliothek. Beurré Berkmans is the pear on the right.


Family Rosaceae
Region of origin

Garden origin, Belgium

Common Name

Dessert Pear, winter

Name in the Camden Park Record

Beurré Berkman’s

Confidence level high