Trimming Bradford Pear Trees Tips and Advice

A Bradford pear tree in full bloom is a sight to behold. The clusters of pure white flowers, often with a pink tinge, are mesmerizing. However, the trees do need some work to keep them looking their best. They also have a tendency to break under extreme conditions. If you want to keep your tree healthy and looking great, you have to prune it properly every year.

If you have a Bradford Pear tree on your property, then it’s important to know how to trim it correctly. If not done properly, you could end up damaging the tree. In this guide, we will provide tips and advice on how to trim a Bradford pear tree safely and effectively. We’ll also discuss when the best time to do this is. So if you’re interested in learning more, keep reading.


What to know about Bradford pear trees

The Bradford pear tree (Pyrus calleryana ‘Bradford’) is one of the most popular and widely grown varieties. This hybrid tree produces small fruit, but it is often grown for its ornamental fall color.

Bradford pear trees are beautiful ornamental plants that produce white flowers in spring and change to deep red and purple in fall. However, they are not long-lived plants, and they can get very large — up to 50 feet tall with a 30-foot canopy.

They also tend to develop weak branch angles that break easily in wind or ice storms, a problem made worse by their tendency to become overcrowded as the years pass.

Before we get into the specifics of trimming a Bradford pear tree, let’s first take a look at some general information about these trees.

  • Bradford pear trees are notorious for being weak and brittle. They often break under heavy loads of snow or ice.
  • They are also susceptible to disease, so it’s important to keep an eye on them and treat any problems as soon as they arise.
  • Bradford pear trees bloom in late winter or early spring, depending on the climate.
  • The flowers are very fragrant and can be quite beautiful when in bloom.

When is the best time to trim a Bradford pear tree?

The best time to trim a Bradford pear tree is in late winter or early spring, before new growth begins. This is when the tree is dormant and most susceptible to damage. Trimming at this time will also help reduce the risk of disease.


How to trim a Bradford pear tree

When trimming a Bradford pear tree, there are three main goals:

  1. Remove dead or damaged branches
  2. Thin out the canopy to allow light and air to circulate through the tree
  3. Shape the tree into a more desirable form

Tips for trimming Bradford pear tree

  • When removing dead or damaged branches, always use sharp pruning shears and make clean cuts. Be careful not to damage healthy branches in the process.
  • Also, remove any crossing branches, as they can create weak points in the tree.
  • Thin out the canopy by removing branches that are growing too close together. This will help improve air circulation and reduce the risk of disease.
  • Maintain a tidy appearance by trimming a Bradford pear tree’s suckers that grow at the base of the trunk. Suckers are easy to identify because they originate from the soil and are smaller than the main branches with fewer leaves. Prune them throughout the growing season as they appear.
  • Finally, shape the tree into a more desirable form by removing branches that are not needed or desired. When shaping a Bradford pear tree, it’s important to keep in mind its natural growth pattern. Try to maintain the natural shape and size of the tree as much as possible

What are the benefits of trimming your Bradford pear tree?

There are many benefits to trimming your Bradford pear tree. Trimming helps maintain the shape of the tree, encourages new growth, and strengthens the tree. It also helps prevent damage from wind and storms.

Trimming your Bradford pear tree at least once a year is recommended.


Dangers of not trimming properly

If you do not trim your Bradford pear tree properly, it can lead to a number of problems. Trimming the wrong parts of the tree can damage the tree and make it more susceptible to disease and pests.

Incorrect trimming can also lead to an ugly appearance and reduce the amount of fruit that the tree produces.



Trimming a Bradford pear tree can be tricky, but if done correctly, it can help improve the health and appearance of your tree. Follow these tips and advice to trim your Bradford pear tree safely and effectively.