Complete Bradford Pear Tree Pruning Guide

Here is how and when to prune Bradford pear trees.

A lot of people find tree planting exciting.

These plants offer a wide range of benefits ranging from producing assorted fruits and shade and timber, among a long list of others.

For a tree to grow as expected, there needs to be proper maintenance.

How To Prune a Bradford Pear Tree

Maintenance can be quite varied and include watering, fertilizing, pruning, and harvesting.

In this article, we’ll be discussing pruning Bradford pear trees. This is an excellent fruiting tree widely grown in many gardens across the country.

For your tree to stand a chance of thriving, it needs to be properly pruned. Pruning isn’t as easy as it sounds. You need to have the knowledge and proper guidance on how to proceed.

All of these details have been discussed here. So, to get your Bradford pear trees adequately pruned, you only need to follow this guideline.

Are There Any Benefits to Pruning Bradford Pear Trees?

Like most tree types, pruning Bradford pear trees offers many benefits. Such benefits include the improvement of yield or fruit product and the structure and appearance of the tree.

The health of the tree is also maintained.

Through proper pruning, you’re able to prevent safety hazards from occurring. Pruning benefits the pear tree, the environment, and you, the owner.

It’s pretty common to have dead or diseased branches on Bradford pear trees. This is where inspections and periodic pruning become necessary.

You want to prevent a precarious situation where high winds break off brittle and dead branches during storms.

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This could pose a danger to cars parked beneath the trees. After the storm, weakened branches can give way when you least expect it, thus posing a significant hazard to your household members.

How to Trim Bradford Pear Trees

The pruning action should begin when the tree is young to shape or train it into form.

While this is true, you may inherit Bradford pear trees that haven’t been pruned in a long time. Such trees might be in bad shape and will require systematic pruning action.

For such trees (those which haven’t been pruned for long), it’s best to call an arborist to get the job done. Here, the canopy will undoubtedly be a mess. Only the expertise of a pro will bring it back to shape.

The process is never haphazard as certain limbs are picked out for removal.

Limbs removed here will include those considered think and found in the center of the canopy and other major limbs that may not be well-positioned on the tree.

Sometimes, arborists may call for the outright removal of a Bradford pear tree if its condition is considered critical.

The best time to prune Bradford pear trees is around fall. This is when it goes into dormancy. In summer and spring, new growth occurs, and these would be the worst times for trimming.

  • Readying your Pruning Tools

Before proceeding with pruning, it’s necessary to get all your tools and supplies ready.

Your supplies should include a solution containing about 70% alcohol. This is especially necessary for Bradford pear trees with symptoms of diseases.

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Other tools include hand pruners, pruner sheaths, pole saw blades, loppers, and long-reach pole saw pruners. Your Bradford pear tree’s condition will determine the pruning tools to use.

You must be knowledgeable on how to use such equipment.

  • Pruning Bradford Pear Trees the Right Way

As mentioned earlier, the pruning process is never haphazard. First off, you’ll need to start when it’s young. Next, target all dead branches for removal.

This should be followed by diseased, moldy, or weak branches. Only the thickest and strongest vertical branches should be allowed to be the central leader.

What more? Branches left on your Bradford pear tree should be those angled at 45 degrees or more. You should find no branches to rub against larger ones.

Is Topping Bradford Pear Tree a Good Idea?

In finding relevant information on Bradford pear tree pruning, you might have come across information regarding topping.

If so, what does it mean? As the name suggests, topping is a powerful method of pruning that is widely considered harmful to trees.

One method targets the central leader or vertical part of the tree that grows upward. This is a simple technique that’s discouraged by experts.

Arborists will never recommend topping as a way to prune your Bradford pear tree as it could lead to the destruction of the tree.

So, what exactly are the downsides of topping? First off, there’s the possibility of disease and decay resulting from such a cut. Also, structural failure follows in addition to higher maintenance costs.

Let’s have a brief look at each of these points.

  • Disease and Decay

Unlike other parts or limbs of the tree, the central leader, once cut, hardly heals appropriately.

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Usually, a natural healing process plays out with other tree parts. This compartmentalizes the cut area and forms or grows protective layers over affected parts.

In the case of topping, that doesn’t happen. Instead of the natural healing process, topping makes your Bradford pear tree more vulnerable to diseases.

It won’t be long before decay ensues and diseases take over the tree.

  • Structural Failure

Structural failure happens when your Bradford pear tree is topped.

Here, a significant portion of the tree’s foliage is gone, thus making it impossible for the tree to sustain itself through photosynthesis and nutrient distribution.

With a significant part of the tree gone, other components, such as the branches and root systems, begin to fail. Your Bradford pear tree also becomes unsightly and doesn’t blend into your surroundings as it once did.

  • Higher Maintenance Costs

Improper pruning of the Bradford pear tree results in problems, including a rise in maintenance costs.

Instead of an ideal pruning interval of 1 to 2 years, you might manage sprout growths that might come up too often because the tree is topped.

Have a Pro Perform your Bradford Pear Tree Pruning

If the details on how to go about pruning your tree sound like a lot to do, you might want to try the easiest and most reliable option available; calling the pros. Arborists provide all sorts of solutions to tree problems.

Have them come over to inspect and possibly prune your Bradford pear trees.

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