Consider the first line of the famous song Катюша:

Расцветали яблони и груши

In English, this line roughly translates to "Apples and pears were blossoming". However, the plural noun "apples" in Russian is usually яблоки, not яблони as found in the song. What's the difference between яблоки and яблони?

Perhaps яблони is better translated to something like an uncounted noun "apple", as in "Apple and pear were blossoming".

  • 5
    Additional note - in Russian, there is a word for apple tree - "яблоня", but there is no word for pear tree. Thus "груши" means both pear trees (in this song's context) and pear fruits (default context).
    – Alexander
    Commented Sep 20, 2017 at 22:27

1 Answer 1


I think яблони refers to the apple trees while яблоки refers to the apples.

  • facepalm I should have just used Google translate.
    – DanielSank
    Commented Sep 20, 2017 at 20:30
  • @DanielSank I better use www.translate.ru ;-) it is custom tailored for Russian, while Google/Bing just use Monte Carlo :-D
    – Arioch
    Commented Sep 21, 2017 at 8:46
  • @Arioch Если не монти карло, то что? Commented Sep 23, 2017 at 1:46
  • @IntrepidNomad a specialized engine. It supports much less languages, but recognize more nuances and is not influenced by political flamewars. Previously there were two major engines, ProMT-Stylus and Socrat. I liked latter more, but it ceased to exist. The link to the former is in my comment above. Take different styles of text (poetic, technical, political) and run through both engines to make a comparison
    – Arioch
    Commented Sep 25, 2017 at 9:07

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