Pear Tree

Kurt Elieson

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First Class requirement #6: Identify or show evidence of at least 10 kinds of native plants found in your community.

Pears are the smoothly round or oval trees that you see all over Dallas-Fort Worth. Adults often tell kids they are lollipop trees. Teenagers often call them eggheads. Yell "egghead" every time you see a pear tree in the median of the road and you will soon be walking.

Pear branches come out sideways but immediately turn and grow straight up. Since the branches near the center have a head start, the middle stays taller and the overall shape stays round. Do not confuse pears with mulberries. Mulberry branches stay horizontal, and landscapers will tell you that mulberries are not worth planting.

Most pear trees around Dallas-Forth Worth are Bradford pears. In the fall their leaves almost always turn a pretty yellow-red color. They only lose their pretty fall leaves for about two months before sending out lots of white blossoms in February. Then kids call them popcorn trees. Because they reliably produce both fall and spring color, landscapers call them "ornamental" trees. This is a polite way of saying that, while Bradford pears are ever so pretty, they don't do anything useful like actually producing fruit.

Click on the pictures to see them up close.

Page last updated 2011.11.07