Group warns of invasive pear trees in area

Mar. 29—The State of Indiana Cooperative Invasives Management is cautioning against the use of ornamental pear trees in landscaping due to it being an invasive plant species.

Callery pear trees, such as the Bradford and Chanticleer pear trees, are medium-sized and rapidly growing species that can form dense thickets and outcompete the area's native species, according to a release from the organization.

These plants, which are sold in nurseries, are often used in landscaping projects due to its flowers and colorful fall foliage, but they are also commonly spotted growing along roadsides and woodland edges.

The Indiana Invasives Initiative encourages home and land owners to map this invasive tree species and plan for control. The Callery pear is blooming now in Vigo County, and can be indicated by its malodorous white flowers with five petals, which are approximately one inch wide. The fruits are typically half an inch in diameter and green to brown in color.

Because it can adapt to a wide variety of conditions, it is a threat to native grasslands and forested areas. In urban and landscaped areas, it poses a threat because it is a weak tree that is easily damaged by ice and wind, resulting in utility outages, property damage and safety hazards, the group states.

The organization is petitioning to stop the sale of these plants in the state, and asks residents to support its cause by signing the petition online at https://bit.ly/49irpE6.