You won't find them in supermarkets, but edible quinces or Cydonia oblonga are an exotic addition to any garden and deserve to be more widely grown.
These pear- or apple-shaped fruits are greenish-yellow and as hard as nails until they ripen to a golden colour in autumn. The slow-growing trees are as attractive as their fruit. In late May, fragrant, pale-pink, open-faced blossom opens among deep-green, felty leaves. The bark of the gnarled trunks comes in mottled shades of green and brown.