Help PLEASE with bradford flowering pear

Memphis, TN

We bought this a couple months ago and it was doing great, has grown etc. all the sudden a couple wks. ago some of the leaves at the bottom had black spots on the leaves. The neighbor said we were watering it to much, but we were not watering that much. we laid off the water then saw on hgtv that new trees were to get 10 gal. per wk. we went back to watering and laid off again in the last wk. about 40% of the leaves have black spots on them and they seem to grow to be big black spots and then the leaves turn brown and die. I do not want to lose this tree any help would be greatly appericated. Thanks, Cara

Philadelphia, PA(Zone 6b)

HI Cara,
I have a few Bradford Pears and have had a similar problem on the bottom leaves but it went away. First, any new tree should be kept well-watered, even during the winter. The yellow leaves and spots may be from a fungus, leaf spot, which is caused by the leaves getting wet. Dispose of infected leaves and avoid watering the remaining leaves. You can spray with a fungicide if the problem is really extensive (40% is rather a large portion of the tree) but it usually goes away (at least in my case it did). Bradford Pears are alse prone to a bacterial problem called fire blight but that's when you have branches and new twigs dying. Good luck and maybe some of the tree people will give suggestions. Just thought I'd give my opinion :)
Trish

Memphis, TN

Thank you very much for the info., Cara

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