Planting, Growing, and Harvesting Pears



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Biting into a juicy pear is one of the joys of the season. See how to plant, grow, and harvest pears in your own backyard. They are easy to fit into small yard spaces, and attractive, and require very little care once established.

Also, growing pears is generally easier than growing apples, as they have less pest and disease issues.

Most pear trees are not self-pollinating so plan for at least two trees to ensure consistent fruit.

There are many different types of pears; some are best eaten raw and some are best for cooking. 

You can also grow pears in containers—and plant at any time of the year. (Make sure you purchase pears specifically bred for containers.)

Be aware that pears can take from 3 to 10 years to bear fruit. Once they start producing, pear trees are prolific and long-lasting!


  • If you live outside of the dry western regions, you should choose fire blight–resistant types and rootstocks.
  • Plan to plant at least two varieties of pear trees, as they will need to be cross-pollinated to produce fruit. Make sure the varieties are compatible with each other.
  • Plant in any fertile, well-drained soil in full sun in a place with good air circulation in the winter or early spring.
  • Space standard-size trees 20 to 25 feet apart. Space dwarf trees 12 to 15 feet apart.
  • For container-grown trees, remove the plant from its pot and remove any circling roots by laying the root ball on its side and using shears to cut through the roots.
  • For grafted trees, position the inside of the curve of the graft union away from the sun when planting.
  • Dig a hole that is a few inches deeper and wider than the spread of the roots. Set the tree on top of a small mound of soil in the middle of the hole. Be sure to spread the roots away from the trunk without excessively bending them. Do not add fertilizer or topsoil to the hole.


  • Water the young trees well during dry spells to help establish the roots.
  • Apply a small amount of fertilizer early in the year. Add ⅛ pound of ammonium nitrate per tree multiplied by the number of years the tree has been set in moderately fertile soil. If you have highly fertile soil, use less fertilizer.
  • If the leaves are pale green or yellowish during the summer, use a little more fertilizer the next year.
  • If the tree grows more than 12 inches in one season, use less fertilizer the next year.
  • Be very careful when applying fertilizer! If you give your trees too much nitrogen, they will become more susceptible to fire blight and also may focus too much energy on producing foliage instead of flowers and fruit.
  • For dwarf trees, prune them to a central leader system. Standard-size trees can be pruned to either a central leader system or a modified leader system, which is easier to maintain.
  • The central leader system features a central trunk with branches that spiral out every 5 to 8 inches, making sure that no branch is directly above another. The training for such a system begins in the early summer of the first year, during which time you should remove any shoots that form within 18 inches of the ground. The end result should resemble a Christmas tree.
  • Use spreaders to help shape the branches of the trees. These help the branches to spread outward rather than upward. When the branches are small, you can use clothespins to push the branches away from the main trunk. For bigger branches, use wooden slats with a “V” shape notched into each end.
  • Prune your trees regularly, generally lightly. Remember to thin the fruit as well, leaving about 6 inches between each cluster of fruit per branch.
  • After your trees are established, water them regularly.



  • Harvest pears when they are mature but still hard. Ripen the pears at room temperature for the best quality fruits.
  • To store pears, pick them when they are fully grown but still very hard. You can keep them in the refrigerator; they should last for about 1 week. You can also keep them in containers in a cool (about 40°F), dark place; they should keep for 1 to 2 months.
  • You can also can the pears for longer storage.

Recommended Varieties

Wit & Wisdom

Pick pears when the fruit has a faint yellow blush but is still green.

Drop peeled pears in cold, lightly salted water, and they won’t turn brown.


Reader Comments

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Bartlett Pear

Hi, I have a Bartlett Pear about 25-30 years old. Got out of hand cut back about 1/3. So far so good usually fruits so we shall see, did get flowers. 2 questions. What is best general spray to use. And you say you need 2 pear trees to pollinate. We only have one, except for many Bradford pears. Also have apple, peach and cherry which I spray with Biodine, which says not for pears. Thanks!

Bartlett pear care

Bartlett pear trees are partially self-fertile; they perform better with a pollination partner of a different variety nearby. d’Anjou, Bosc, and Comice are good partners. It’s not clear what you mean re the Bradford pears. Whatever luck you have had may be due to the presence of the other fruit trees; we can not confirm that at this time and you might consider consulting your local cooperative extension (see here  ) or a local nursery.

BONIDE is the spray to which you refer (Biodine is something else), and it appears from the label that it should not be used on pears, as you suggest; pear trees are not listed on the label. It appears from our research that pears require frequent spraying of organic oils. You can see a proposed schedule here: (This is from the University of New Hampshire cooperative extension service. Using the link above you can find the service nearest you and see if they suggest other options for your area.)

Ornimental pear pollinators?

Thank you for responding. I planted a Bartlett pear per your advice. Both pear tress are about 50 feet apart. Is that close enough for pollination? When does the fruit typically ripen in zone 6b? Do I need to pull and ripen fruit off the tree?

More pear information

Many sources say that the two standard-size pear trees that bloom at the same time should be within a 50-foot distance for pollination. Dwarf trees are closer (about 15 to 20 feet). Ayres pears, which are for Zones 6 to 8, ripen late July to early August. Pears don’t ripen on the tree! They need to be picked before ripening or they’ll be mealy. It’s a bit of an art to know when to pick pears. The best way to tell if a pear is ready to harvest is by taking the fruit in your hand and tilting it horizontally (as opposed to its natural vertical hanging position). The mature fruit will easily come away from the branch at this angle . If it is not yet ready for picking, it will hold on to the branch.

Ornimental pear pollinators?

Last year I planted an ayers semi dwarf pear tree in my backyard. We have ornimental aristocrat pear trees lining our sidewalk outside our yard. Will these ornimentals pollinate the ayers? Or do I need to plant another fruit bearing pear tree? If so, what type is best to plant to assure pollination with the auers?

We love the Ayres pear. Their

We love the Ayres pear. Their fruit has a lovely smooth and very sweet flavor. The blooms are partially self-pollinating, but better crops will develop pollinating with another high chill variety like Bartlett or Blake’s Pride. In terms of your ornamental Asian pear, the question is whether the bloom time is overlapping. Generally, Asian pears are early bloomers and European pears are mid-season bloomers. Btw, those Asian pears lining your sidewalk are invasives and we’d discourage new plantings of this tree:—a-bad-bad-plant-with-pretty-flowers.html

Pear Tree Advise

I currently have Simi Ayers, Bartlett, Keifer and Moon Glow trees. One of them blooms much earlier than the other. As in mid Feb. Flowers are gone and it's in full leaf by the time the other trees wake up. My chart says it's my Kiefer but my chart must be wrong. It must be the Bartlett but I'm not sure. Any thought about a very early blooming tree that I don't already have that I can use as a pollinator for whoever the early one is?

which pear makes a pair . . .

It all sounds lovely and promising, James—and more than we are qualified or experienced to help with. We suggest that you talk to someone in your area and recommend your local cooperative extension. Click on your state here for locations near you: The folks at these centers are extremely knowledgeable and well-connected.

best wishes!

pear tree

we don't know much about pear trees. We are learning. We bought a Clapps Favorite Pear 2 years ago. It is growing well, but we need to plant another pear for it to pollinate. I read some varieties won't pollinate with other ones, like Bartlett. What would be a good variety to plant near this one for pollination purposes. Any help would be appreciated.
Thank you!

Pollination Pointers

Hi, Pam: Bartlett should work just fine for your Clapp’s Favorite, as would Red Sensation, Beurre Bosc, Seckel, or Moonglow. Thanks for asking!

Childhood bartlett pear tree

Was looking into planting a bartlett tree and having the the best pears around. We were the only ones that had a pear tree in the area. We picked them off the tree all summer long and never had a problem with the pears being hard or mealy. In fact, we apparently did everything wrong. But they were the best pears I have ever eaten. Only pears I will ever eat. Have the best flavor. Even the robins came to eat the ones on the very top of the old tree.

No Pears

I have two European Anjou dwarf pear trees. The first year we got them they gave us a nice crop of pears. The next year no pears. Do they produce every other year or is something not right.

end of season pears on trees and frost

Haven't been able to find anything online so far, but I have been slowly picking Bartlett pears, big as my hand, from a tree usually stripped by groundhogs and other greedy creatures. Tree even had fireblight, and I cut back hard to clean wood, so I'm quite delighted with this crop. But tonight it will probably frost, early, and I was hoping to find out whether to pick em too early or will they be unharmed. Too late for answer this time, but nice to know for future.

Well.... ??

Hi, Jeannine: It depends a little bit on the variety and a lot on the depth of the freeze, but in general pears can withstand some cold (a few days of light frost) if you can cover them. Folks often use old bed sheets clothespinned to the branches or even safety pinned to themselves and dropped over/around a small tree like a skirt. But moisture is moisture, and the moisture in a pear is no friend of freezing, by any means. So…. What did you end up doing? What happened? And thanks for asking….

Pear tree

One of my pear trees has 4 new branches growing on it. 2 branches have the same leaves and the other 2 branches have the same leaves of another type of leaf. Neither of these 2 types of new leaves resemble a pear tree leaf. What's the deal with that?

Turning Over a New Leaf

Hi, Trish: Pretty mysterious, but if indeed you have three different types of leaves on the same tree, no doubt this is a reflection of something having to do with your scion’s rootstock and/or some sort of genetic mutation. Another possibility is that the leaves are still too immature to be fully developed and identified, but you sound like you would have recognized this if it were a possibility. Thanks for asking, and keep us posted!

Cross pollination

Most pear trees need a 2nd variety of pear to produce fruit. Is it possible to use a different fruit tree such as an apple or peach instead of a 2nd pear tree for this purpose? I have about a third acre so there is plenty of room but I don't think I need 2 pear trees but would like a pear and an apple. Advice?

pear tree pollination

Sorry, pears will only pollinate pears, apples will only pollinate other apples, and so on. Further, it must be a different variety of the same fruit species within 500 feet of each other. Two trees of the same variety will not pollinate each other. Pears especially need a lot of pollinators (bees) to make sure it all happens!

Pear tree

My Dad has a pear tree in Texas and the fruit is big but is hard as a rock and remains that way even when they fall off, they never get ripe and just stay hard, he has ajoid pears or what ever they call it , it's a French name. anyway the pears stay as hard as a rock and do not ripen, my pears are doing the same thing on my tree but mine have little yellow pears on it and they fall to the ground and are hard as a rock as well, why is this?

Ripening Pears

Hi Lori,

Most pears, unlike apples, do not ripen on the tree. If they are left on the tree for too long, they become mealy and tough. They should be picked when still slightly immature. They then need to undergo and cooling process (for Anjou, it should take 2 to 6 weeks). Next they should undergo a ripening period at 65 to 70 degrees F for 7 to 10 days. They can then be put into brown paper bags with bananas to speed up the ripening process, which relies on the release of ethylene gas. Pears are ripe when the skins yield to gentle pressure. Hope that helps!


I ate a barlett pear today and it didn't have any seeds in it. How is that possible?

Be Pre-peared

Hi, Yvonne: With pears, you never know what you’re going to get, do you? If this was a true Bartlett pear, perhaps this resulted from some hybridization or mutation, or even from a late-summer flower that didn’t get pollinated. The key is pollination. There are also pears, such as ‘Novembra’, that do not need pollination and thus do not have seeds. Perhaps you had one of these or a similar. Thanks for asking!


My friend and I have had this argument for about 3 years: Do pears grow from trees or the ground? We would appreciate it if you answered this question for us. Thanks

Pear Trees

Hi Brendan, Pears grow on trees! We’re glad we could end the debate.

Yellowing leaves

Hi, I planted a pear tree around mid-April of this year. It was growing well, until a month ago. The leaves started getting black spots, and after a few days the leaves started turning yellow, they started all around the edge of the leaves and in the middle, then the leaves turn completely yellow and later brown. The leaves easily come off the tree. Around a week ago I sprayed Spectracide Immunox Multipurpose fungicide, but it doesn't seem to do anything. Any advice?

Pear Scab

Hi Anthony,

That sounds like pear scab. First, bear in mind it isn’t a good ide to spray fungicides without knowing the target, as timing is everything and is dependent on the life cycle of the disease or pest. With pear scab, fungicides are applied before the tree even foliates, as a preventative measure. So it’s too late now that your tree is infested. Go ahead get rid of all of the infected leaves (from the tree and soil). Sanitation is key. Continue to keep the tree as free of diseased leaves as possible. You can do a bit of pruning if the tree is crowded to increase air circulation and sun exposure (fungi thrives in moist conditions). Keep the leaves as dry as possible by watering the root zone (versus overhead). Keeping this first breakout under control will help to lessen the severity of a secondary infection.

very small pears.

Our trees are 4 years old and have always produced very small pears. This year we have more pears than we have had before but they are still very small. What can we do to increase the size of the fruit?

Bigger Fruit

Hi, Stephanie: Please see the reply to Dianne below on Feb. 19, which includes: “To get bigger pears you need to thin the fruit when it first appears. Leave about 6 inches between the remaining pears.” Thanks for asking, and good luck!

Pears disappeared

Our pear trees have had fruit every year prior to this one. This year they started out with small pears growing on them. We've had a lot of rain in the past few weeks. Yesterday when we checked them, the pears were gone. What happened to them?

We suspect that raccoons (and

We suspect that raccoons (and maybe squirrels) got to your pears. Raccoons are known to strip a pear tree and leave no trace. They always get the pears before they are fully ripe.


We have a couple of pear trees but don't know when to pick some have already started to fall
I don't know what type of trees they are as they were there when we bought our house

Pear Pickin'

Hi, Melissa: Generally, pears are best picked when slightly soft to the touch, but this can depend on a number of factors. Falling pears are usually ripe, so consider putting some netting or even a (covered) hammock under a tree to save some work (and damage). And if you get to them quickly enough, there’s certainly nothing wrong with fallen pears as far as eating goes. We used to play out in some woods that had overgrown an old orchard from a War of 1812 army encampment, and nothing beat dropped pears for a boyhood snack! Thanks for asking!

Pear trees with little to no blooms

We planted a Bartlett and an Ayers pear tree 5 years ago. Each we roughly 5' tall at planting. Both are 14' tall now. 2 years ago the Ayers tree produced 5 pears. The Bartlett has never produced any blooms or pears. Last year neither tree even produced a bloom. This year the Ayers has a few blooms but none on the Bartlett. What am I doing wrong?

no flowers or fruit

Check that you are not giving the trees (or lawn surrounding them) too much fertilizer, which will encourage leaf growth over flowering, and also encourages fire blight. Also check that you are pruning correctly. Examine each plant for stresses, such as disease.

If you live in the deep south, it may also be that the trees are not getting enough chilling hours (below 45F). Ayers is hardy in Zones 6 to 8, and requires about 350 to 600 chilling hours (sources vary). Bartlett is hardy in Zones 5 to 8, and requires about 800 chilling hours.

Hello. We just purchased a

Hello. We just purchased a dwarf pear tree and are trying to decide where to plant it. We have a spot near the house that would be bout 4 feet from the side of the house. Do you know what the roots of a pear tree are like as far as being by the foundation of the house? Thanks

Hi Ginny,

Hi Ginny,

The tree may not have much room for the roots to spread if you plant it 4 feet from the house. The soil is also more compacted near a foundation and it will be harder for the roots to develop. We suggest that you find a spot further away from the house.

Only Dime size fruit on pear trees

We planted several pear trees several years ago... for the first two years they trees produced no fruit.
In the last two years, the trees produce an abundance of flowers and what appears to be a lot of fruit but none if this fruit ever grow larger than the size of a dime.
I believe two of the trees are Asian pear and another is an Anjou..
We are growing zone 5 - 6 and the trees are in an area that gets full sun all day.
Any suggestions?

Hi Dianne,

Hi Dianne,

Prune pear trees annually in the early spring, before the new growth begins. Pruning results in a bigger crop. Remove dead branches and limbs and then top off the main trunk and any smaller branches. Also thin branches to increase sunlight and air circulation. This will help the overall health of the trees. 

Apply a small amount of fertilizer early in the year. Add ⅛ pound of ammonium nitrate per tree multiplied by the number of years the tree has been growing in moderately fertile soil.

To get bigger pears you need to thin the fruit when it first appears. Leave about 6 inches between the remaining pears.

Pear and mangos

I have several mango trees in my backyard orchard and have added a kiefer pear tree. Will the mango trees cross pollinate?

For cross-pollination to

For cross-pollination to happen the fruit trees must be from the same species. So a mango tree will not cross-pollinate a pear tree.

I have 2 young kiffer pear

I have 2 young kiffer pear trees with lots of great size pears. However they are hard like a rock. I picked few put them in brown begs, picked more and put them in the fridge, picked more and left in room temp. Nothing seams to ripen them. What is the secret? They are 2 years old and i am so delighted to see how many pears i got on them but we can't eat them yet.S hould we leave them to ripen on the tree? Thanks.

Kieffer Pears hard as a rock

I have the same issue and have had them for 10 years. Pears (European), don't ripen well on the tree. You need to pick them and it is running late now so I wouldn't wait, put them in with apples. Some people say brown paper bags work to help the gas release better and ripen the pears. I find the Kieffers are best for canning but they take about 2 weeks of staying in a cool spot with the apples to eat fresh.

Ripening Kieffer Pears

They should be harvested when rock hard and when tilted they fall off into your hand. Also they should be about a half pound or more when I start picking. In Missouri this is sometime around September. I use a pool skimmer with a trout net on one end to help harvest any fruit trees with fruit on the upper branches. I have had luck picking them and placing them in cardboard fruit boxes that stack and allow some air flow. I try not to let them put weight on each other. As a result the boxes only stack about 3 or 4 high. I put a label on them with the date of harvest. Each week I harvest until complete; about a month. By this time the first harvest is turning yellow, smelling like a pear, and softening up (about 3-4 weeks at 70 degrees).
The GOOD thing about kieffers is they don't know how to get dry or mealy, suffer minimal fire blight damage, and require no spraying. The BAD thing to me is the skin is like a toad or reptile (at least in sticky St. Louis). But underneath this skin is heaven. I enjoy them chilled with a knife to peel off some of that skin. Now that's Organic Livin.

Kieffer Pears

They are actually what I call a winter pear. They will hang onto a tree until quite late without attracting birds until almost to ripe (yes, they, unlike such as the Bartlet, will ripen on the tree) After harvest, if refrigerated in plastic bags, they will get somewhat brown spotted but inside remain tasty and edible pretty much all winter!

I just planted a pear tree.

I just planted a pear tree. Does it need to be pollinated each year to bear fruit? thanks Jay

Though there are a few

Though there are a few self-fruitful pear varieties, it is best to grow two different varieties for good cross-pollination. Be sure the two varieties are compatible and blossom at the same time so bees can do their work.

Late flowing We planted two

Late flowing

We planted two pear trees and one peach tree last Autumn.

They are all green and seem healthy but didn't flower in spring. One of the pear trees (SummerCrisp) has just started to flower now, in mid September. Is this usual, or am I missing something?

The area is Northern Nevada


In hot dry areas it is not

In hot dry areas it is not uncommon for fruit trees to take a break during the stress of summer. When the weather starts to moderate they will "wake up" and think its spring and start to blossom. Since there isn't time for them to produce mature fruit before winter, remove any tiny fruits that appear. Hopefully there will be enough buds that were not tricked into blooming left to flower next spring.

Thank you for your reply.

Thank you for your reply. Given that it's the only one flowing will it still produce, albeit very small, fruit if there is nothing to cross pollinate with?

Summer crisp needs another

Summer crisp needs another pear tree in bloom for cross pollination. You will probably not get any fruit this year.

I live in Pacifica, CA. My

I live in Pacifica, CA. My new house has a well established Bartlet Pear tree that is planted in the cement with a 31" hole for it. How should I water and feed it?

Pear Tree in Pacifica

Unless a seriously dwarfed tree, and even then, it is unlikely to thrive with only 31" of exposed root zone. Its roots will extend out far more than that, and need deep watering and a little nitrogen each year out to the periphery of the root spread (drip line) where it mostly feeds.

I planted 2, 2 year old

I planted 2, 2 year old bartlet trees in Western KS. Both got fire blight, one was completely destroyed. The other has some shoots that have survived but the tree died. Will the shoots be more resistant to fire blight? Should I try to cultivate the shoots? I don't want to fight fire blight every year.

i have a florda pear tree.

i have a florda pear tree. when is the best time to pick the fruit. I live in southern louisiana

Pick the pears when they are

Pick the pears when they are full size and the yellowish color starts to appear. We generally do not leave the pears on the tree as they mature unevenly and some start to decay. After you pick your pears, wrap them in paper and store them at room temperature to ripen.

I have a question regarding

I have a question regarding the fruit on my "cooking" pear trees. This year, there were 1,000's of pears on the trees and the next week they were all gone. I checked for critter tracks, no deer tracks, no coon tracks, nothing to indicate if the wildlife is stealing the pears. Is there a reason for this?? If so, what?

Oh, I live in Fosters, AL (outside of Tuscaloosa).

Thank you,

BJ Caudle

We suspect that raccoons

We suspect that raccoons and/or squirrels got your pears. Raccoons are known to strip a pear tree and leave no trace. They always get the pears just before they are fully ripe.

Bluejays ruin our pears.

Bluejays ruin our pears.

I have two Parkers and a

I have two Parkers and a Gourmet, which I know to be pollen sterile. Can the Parkers self-pollinate enough to produce fruit or do I need a third variety? I understand that Parker and Patten can "do their own thing" to some extent. If they need a third variety, which is recommended for zone 3-4?

Parker pears are reputed to

Parker pears are reputed to produce some fruit without a second variety for cross-pollination. For best results, however, another variety would be helpful. As you said, Gourmet is sterile so it can not be used as a pollinator. So, you'd need to select a third variety that has an overlapping bloom time. Parker is a midseason pear, so look for other midseason varieties. We like Summercrisp pears. Other varieties include Bartlett, Maxine, and Seckel.

I just bought a house and it

I just bought a house and it has what we believe to be is a small pear tree. How can I tell what kind it is and if it is edible. It currently has fruit all over it but nothing too big yet. About 3 to four inches long. And I did not happen to see any other pear trees around it.

It would help to know where

It would help to know where you live. There are so many pear varieties. As a best next step, we would suggest you contact your local county extension and provide a sample for I.D. 

I am renting a house and have

I am renting a house and have an unknown pear tree in the back yard that has over 2 dozen fruit developing on it. I am in California and we are in the middle of a drought so I have been watering it twice a week. I was looking at the tree yesterday and a couple of the fruit looks like they are shriveling up. Any ideas as to why they are shriveling up and what I can do to prevent this? My tree produces very good fruit and I would hate to lose them.

It might possibly be due to

It might possibly be due to an insect or disease, such as the pear midge. Check one of the shriveled pears and see if there are larvae inside. For more information about pear midge, see:
For what and when to monitor for in California re: pears:
For more about pear insects and diseases:

What area in the united

What area in the united states will pears grow in?

The areas you ask about are

The areas you ask about are the zones, listed at the top of this page.
Click here to see the USDA Hardiness Zone Map:
Find where you live. Note the color. Check the color rank on the right to see which zone is your color. Then look above at the list of zones to see if yours is there. If it is, you can grow peaches in it.

I was given a 3ft. pear tree

I was given a 3ft. pear tree that was in a pot. This is my 1st time ever trying to grow 1. Do I need another pear tree for pollination even if we have a lot of bees in my area? I'm in Saginaw, Michigan. Thank you

yes! no matter how many bees,

yes! no matter how many bees, you need 2 trees.

Pear identification

We have 1 pear tree in our yard. It produces a ton of fruit so I'm not sure about having to have 2, but last year when we picked the fruit it never reached a perfectly ripened state, despite picking when they easily detached. We live in Northern Ohio. Any ideas as to when the best time to harvest is?

Pear Harvest

Hi Jess, Harvesting pears to ripen perfectly can be tricky. Pears are mature on the tree if you can tilt them to a horizontal position and the stem breaks. It is better to harvest pears when they are not yet fully mature, and then ripen them in your home, as they do not ripen well on trees. After picking them, cool the pears in the refrigerator for a few days, and then leave them at room temperature. We hope this helps!

Hi! I wanted to know if it is

Hi! I wanted to know if it is safe to pland a pear sapling in Southern New York in the beginning of May? If so, how tall do they grow and how much room do they need to grow?

I read Bartlett is vulnerable

I read Bartlett is vulnerable to fire anjou a better tree to plant? I just want the flowers and shade from the tree.

Hi, Carlos: There are some

Hi, Carlos: There are some who say that Anjou tolerates fire blight better than Bartlett does, but still they are both equally susceptible to it. You might consider some other type of hardier flowering tree. Then again, we love pear trees, too, so we know where you're coming from! Good luck!

I want to grow a paw paw tree

I want to grow a paw paw tree in Kansas. I want to choose the best variety for my area. Any suggestions.

my Anjou is not supposed to

my Anjou is not supposed to be a self-pollinator, but this [5th] year [late March] I have one branch of blooms. IF I do happen to get pears this year, do I still need another tree. (Maybe someone near my home has a tree or did I cross pollinate with an ornamental Bradford pear?)

You can wait and see if the

You can wait and see if the blossoms get pollinated and if you get fruit. If you don't get pears this year then we suggest that you get another pear tree for cross-pollination.

I have a Moonglow. Will a

I have a Moonglow. Will a Kieffer or Ayers be a good match for cross-pollination?

Most pear varieties will

Most pear varieties will cross-pollinate each other, except for Bartlett and Seckel. Just make sure you choose a pear tree that does well in your growing zone. Keiffer is self-fruitful and does not need a pollinator.

I am from India,Iwant to

I am from India,Iwant to plant pear,but which variety of the pear is suitable to here. Also tell me about market condition , rate per Kg.If possible send detail about it

Can I plant a pear tree near

Can I plant a pear tree near the house? Are their roots invasive?

Plant fruit trees a minimum

Plant fruit trees a minimum of 4 to 5 feet from your house, ideally 8 to 10 feet away.

I have a Bartlett pear tree

I have a Bartlett pear tree that was pretty much established when I purchased the property. I attempted to trim the tree when it was already 15' tall and it resulted in a year of little fruit. The tree has since recovered but is darn close to 20' tall. It bears a lot of fruit which is almost impossible to get to. Any suggestions?

The optimum height for a

The optimum height for a standard pear tree is about 15 feet. Cut the central leader and the tallest side branches back every 2 to 3 years. Also thin out excessive branches. Remove any water sprouts and dead or crossing branches when needed.

wanted help in growing pear

wanted help in growing pear trees???? got two & 3yrs years no fruit

I have a pear tree that is

I have a pear tree that is about 17 years old and finally put forth a decent crop. I'm wondering what caused the cracks in many of them. Also, I get scabby exteriors but the inside of the fruit is fine.

Your pears may be cracking

Your pears may be cracking from too much rain or water. Or, you may have pear scab, a fungus. If this is the case it is important to clean up all leaf debris in the fall and spray with an organic fungicide in early spring when the first leaf tips appear.

Hi all, we're in an apartment

Hi all, we're in an apartment with a lot of light, and I'm now growing 4 anjou pear tree plants from seeds taken from store fruit we enjoyed. They're all still small, but appear to be doing well. Do I need to have other pear varieties like bartlett or kiefer in order for these plants, once they develop in mature trees, to develop fruit? Also, can they be continuously maintained in apartments, also bearing fruit? If so, do you just keep clipping the top? Thanks in advance for any advice for this newbie "indoor gardener!"

About a month ago I got what

About a month ago I got what the tag said was a Gourmet Pear tree about a month later the leaves are turning reddish. The nurery looked at the leaves and said I need to fertilize with spikes. I was just wondering if I got the wrong tree and will it bear fruit.

You probably have a Gourmet

You probably have a Gourmet pear tree and if it doesn't have small fruit by now you are not going to get any fruit this year.
Fertilize the tree and see if that will help. Red leaves can also be a sign of fire blight or crown rot.

My pear tree has very little

My pear tree has very little fruit.

How do I keep birds off my

How do I keep birds off my pear tree?

I use old computer disks. The

I use old computer disks. The ones with a shiny side. Tie them to the tree branches so they swing freely. They spin around in the breeze and the bright flashes scare the birds.

My husband bought me a pear

My husband bought me a pear tree. Two years now and no blooms. It has big long thorns. What kind of pear tree is this?

I planted pear trees last

I planted pear trees last fall. They are doing great so far! The nursery said they were probably a few years old already so my question is am I supposed to pick the blooms off? I read somewhere that I should not let my trees produce fruit for a few years so the riits will be stronger. I cant find the information now though.

Thank you !

You'll want to thin the pears

You'll want to thin the pears within the first month after bloom occurs, when the fruits are still marble-sized. End up with 8 inches between each fruit. Leave more fruit on the outer portion of the tree. You need to force yourself to thin or a young tree will be overburdened with the weight of the fruit and you'll risk having branches break.
With pears, you want to harvest before they are ripe. Do not let them ripen on the tree or it will affect the taste.  They should be firm and swollen, with a subtle color change to their skin.

We bought a house that has

We bought a house that has two pear trees that have not been cared for in at least 10 years. They are severely overgrown, have volunterers all around the bases, but produce fruit, although very small. One is wrapped in two or three vines of poison ivy/oak that wind throughout the branches as far up as you can see. How should I begin gaining control? Or are they hopeless?

Getting rid of poison ivy

Getting rid of poison ivy entwined in a tree is no easy task. Here's a page with tips:
As far as the pear tree goes, it's easy to renovate an old pear tree as long as it seems structurally sound enough to carry fruit. Here are tips on pruning old fruit trees:

How do I keep squarrels from

How do I keep squarrels from eating my pears

Keeping squirrels out of

Keeping squirrels out of fruit trees is almost impossible. You can protect the crop of the pear trees with bird netting.
To keep them from gnawing through the netting, one idea is to leave a tree "for the squirrels" to provide alternative food.

a local nursery sold me two

a local nursery sold me two pear trees probably 8 years ago. I got 2pears off the parker pear tree. In southern mn. The other tree is a luscious pear tree. They said these two trees would work together, but, no pears. The parker needs a late midseason mate...the luscious is not to be used as a pollinator. Really??? I never bothered to look at the tags till today..good thing I kept them. What can I do to correct this and what should I plant this SPRING?

How and when does one plant

How and when does one plant from whole fruit? The whole fruit I have are not commercially produced and have never been enhanced or altered through chemical or bio means. I'd really like to propogate these guys!

Pear trees are not grown from

Pear trees are not grown from their own seeds and roots. They are propagated from grafting. Read more on this page from the Penn State cooperative extension:

I have a unknown pear tree in

I have a unknown pear tree in my garden and was wondering when I should pick them, they look like they are grown but when is best time of year to pick them also can you blanch them and freeze pears please

Harvest pears when they are

Harvest pears when they are firm and swollen. You don't want them to be ripe and soft. We would suggest that you just taste them to see if are sweet and firm.
Yes, freezing pears is a great way to keep them longer! Make sure you pick them when they are quite firm and not too ripe. Here are some nice instructions on freezing pears:

I have a pear tree that is

I have a pear tree that is about 6 years old. This is the first year it has ever bloomed. It is full of fruit that never grew larger than a marble. It is harvest time and all of the pears are still tiny. Any idea why?

Most likely, undeveloped

Most likely, undeveloped fruit is due to lack of pollination from a shortage of bees.

The pear tree is near two

The pear tree is near two thriving honey bee hives.

If it's not a pollination

If it's not a pollination problem then maybe you have too many pears on your tree. Excessive fruit compete with each other and remain small. Pears produce a cluster of flowers and fruit from each bud. When fruit starts to develop thin to about 1 fruit per bud and about 6 inches between fruit. Your tree will also benefit from some pruning in late winter.

We have an ornamental pear

We have an ornamental pear tree. The fruit on this tree is not edible and is about the size you are describing. Are you sure you have a fruiting pear tree and not one for landscape beauty?

hello, i just bought my first


i just bought my first home this winter which came with an ENORMOUS pear tree. i am trying to get advice for the care of such a mature tree... most of the research i have done is geared toward newer trees. the lowest branches we can barely reach on ladders. how do i know that the fruit is ok to eat? should i be spraying something on them or caring for them in some way?

Any pear tree knowledge would be much appreciated!

Here are a few thoughts to

Here are a few thoughts to get you started:
First of all, an overgrown older pear tree can be renovated with selective pruning. Here is a good fact sheet on pruning a mature pear tree:
Also, you need to test your soil to make sure the soil continues to be fertile; sometimes nitrogen needs to be added on an annual basis. Contact your local county Extension office for a free (or low-cost) soil testing kit.
When the tree starts to develop small fruits, you'll want to thin the pears so that they don't weight down the tree (and cause broken limbs or damage). We think to one fruit per cluster or eight inches between fruits on any branch. This will improve your harvest and size.
Finally, you'll need to implement a pest management program. Pear trees need pesticide applications at different points during the season. Also, keep the area near your pear tree free from debris; promptly remove fallen fruit and leaves.
As a next step, we recommend that you contact your local cooperative extension as pesticide programs vary state-to-state and are often changing.

You do not have to spray your

You do not have to spray your trees. If they have not been sprayed the fruit is fine to eat. Pears will usually ripen off the tree stored in a cool place and newspapers over them. Although I had one variety that was at our home that did not ripen off the tree. If you could time it right they were very good to eat fresh or dried they are awesome. We finally gave up on this tree because we could not process them at the exact moment and then I just had a mess of pears laying on the ground attracting wasps. We cut it down. We picked our next variety and they are still to young to bear fruit. Canned pears are awesome too.

My pear trees are covered in

My pear trees are covered in flowers in the spring but few if any pears. Any that do form are small and deformed. The trees are about 15 years old and from root stock. Help, I really don't want to cut them down but if their not going to produce....

The most common reason for

The most common reason for flowering pear trees to have fruit failure is lack of pollinating. Pears need pollinators, i.e. bees. Do you see lots of bees around the flowers?

I am wondering if a Pear tree

I am wondering if a Pear tree can be grown in a pot and produce fruit/be healthy. I am in Zone 5b-6a.


Melissa Small

Hi, Melissa, We haven't grow

Hi, Melissa, We haven't grow pears in containers. Because there are no truly dwarfing rootstocks for pears, pear trees can be large. Well-pruned mature trees are 18 feet to 20 feet tall. They seem best suited for the ground. You could check with your state cooperative extension, however, to get better local advice! Here is a nice chart fruit that can grow well in containers:

Botanical Name: 


Plant Type: 

Sun Exposure: 

Soil Type: 

Hardiness Zone: 

Bloom Time: 

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