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Article: Bradford Pear Tree (To plant or not to plant): No more Bradford pears for me!

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Forum: Article: Bradford Pear Tree (To plant or not to plant)Replies: 3, Views: 45
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Dayton, OH

September 13, 2010
2:41 PM

Post #8097221

My husband and I bought a weekend home on the water in WC OH in May '96. The house and landscaping were 8 yrs old. We found a landscaper's plan in a drawer, so we knew what everything was. In May of '93 a large section of the tree mysteriously split away, fortunately landing parallel to the house, not on it. I had no idea what was going on--it didn't seem diseased. A passer-by stopped to chat and told me, "That's what those trees do." Yikes! I hoped that would be the end of the splitting. The following May we left the house at noon the Sun. before Memorial Day weekend. That evening our neighbor across the street called and said, "Kathie, remember that shade garden you have in the front yard? It's not a shade garden anymore". Double YIKES!!! All but one section had split away, mercifully not hitting the roof or the next door neighbors' cars. They moved them just in case the last piece came down overnight.
The day before this happened I was working in a flower bed near the road and heard ominous creaking near the house where the tree was. It was breezy, but not really windy and the tree didn't seem to be moving.
We had no idea about the problems with this tree and it had never been pruned out to keep from getting top-heavy. We called a tree removal company the next day and the guy came out to give us an estimate. He said he'd never seen one this big because they usually come down long before they get that size The stump is level and we attached a 5 ft. lighthouse to it -- it looks nice. I used a product called Suckr Stopper to get rid of the suckers that came up constantly from the stump.
The next weekend I worked feverishly to move the shade plants to the back before they burned up. I had always wished I had more sunny garden space. Be careful what you wish for, lol. That garden space soon became a beautiful sunny perennial garden.
I've heard there is a hybrid that doesn't split, but I don't know if that's true.


Milton, MA
(Zone 6a)

September 13, 2010
3:43 PM

Post #8097335

Suckr Stopper, hunh? I have suckers from a euonymous that are driving us nuts.
Fort Worth, TX
(Zone 8a)

September 19, 2010
4:49 AM

Post #8107067

Kmm- Such a familiar story! All we can do is tell who we can about this, and maybe the word will spread. They should be shipped back to China! Though as long as builders keep planting them to provide quick shade and unwary homeowners for the same, we will keep seeing them.
Moreover, if they could eventually learn how these kinds of trees can crowd out the native flora, we might see a reduction.
Best we can do is to keep share our stories like this, and those who do their homework will find us and avoid a lot of headaches.

Thanks for sharing your story!
(Arlene) Southold, NY
(Zone 7a)

May 10, 2013
6:01 AM

Post #9515469

Thanks for the recommendation of Sucker Stopper, kmm. We had a Bradford Pear stump ground out but they left behind some suckers. We had them come back but they only chopped off the suckers below ground level - not good enough. We placed another call to the company and they said the deal was to simply grind out the stump and suckers weren't stipulated. He did agree to come back to finish the job but we are not happy right now.

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