Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Should I Plant a Bradford Pear Tree?

Should I Plant a Bradford Pear Tree?

Bradford Pear
Newcomers to North Texas are impressed with Bradford Pear trees.  In the spring they display abundant small white flowers and in the fall the foliage turns magnificent colors.  The tree can withstand our soil and most Texas droughts.  Buyers of new construction homes find that it grows quickly to provide shade and aesthetic value.

Flowering Bradford Pear
However, there are major drawbacks to Bradford Pears that should give North Texas residents pause when deciding which tree to plant.  First, the tree limbs are weak and split easily, especially in the wind.  Since the branches all grow from about the same area on the trunk, they usually chafe against each other resulting in cracks as they grow.  The majority of Bradford Pears will need an arborist's attention before the end of their lives.

The most important reason not to plant a Bradford Pear is its root system.   The root system is shallow and spreads broadly to find water.  The roots can break the soil and making mowing impossible and walking and running a hazard.  But unsightly roots and a lack of play space in the backyard are not the worst effects of the shallow root system.

In North Texas, the root system's search for water will take it under the foundation and can cause extensive damage to the foundation, pipes, and plumbing.  Young feeder roots can easily extend past the canopy of the tree spreading further than the homeowner might expect.  This reason alone should discourage homeowners from planting Bradford Pear unless they have a location with full sun, no wind, and lots of space away from concrete surfaces.

Need some privacy, but not sure what to plant?  Check out our custom privacy shrubbery page at to learn more about privacy shrubbery options.   

Whether it's selling your home or finding a new one, we have designed our website so that you can quickly and easily locate the information you are looking for. The Grove Team's client-centered approach results in the best possible outcome for you. Please contact us now to begin the process of achieving your dreams in home ownership.
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