Help identifying this tree

Asked May 28, 2018, 3:21 PM EDT

I have 2 of these trees growing in my flower garden. I want to transplant them somewhere else, but need to know what kind of tree so I can plant them in a good location. They have speckled bark, with bright red twigs. The leaves are a bright yellow-green when fresh, with older leaves a much deeper green. It looks to be some variety of pear, apple, or crabapple, but I can't tell if it is a primarily flowering or fruit-bearing variety.

Prince George's County Maryland

4 Responses

These are "Bradford" pears, a foreign invasive tree which has become a huge threat to our parks and wild environments. That's why they have showed up in your yard uninvited. Please destroy them.

Bradford pears were developed to be sterile ornamental Asian callery pear trees, though they were known to be highly aggressive. Unfortunately, they did not stay sterile. Now there are literally millions of these trees invading Maryland and the East Coast. Here is some more information about it:


If you are interested in growing fruit, it is possible to graft a fruiting variety of European or Asian pear (recommended varieties at the link below) onto one of these seedling pears if it is already growing in a sunny location that would be suitable for a fruit tree. A whip and tongue graft works well for this size of tree. This is ideally done in late March - early April but can be done as late a mid-May.

We get so many viable tree saplings on our property, which is in dire need of replacement trees for our big ones in decline, that it is unfortunate to hear this is an invasive. Didn't occur to us that a fruit-type tree would be invasive.

I have another, similar tree in another portion of my yard that I was planning to keep. I've attached photos. I think it is a different kind? The leaves are similar, but the new growth does not have the same bright redness to it that the other 2 saplings have. I hope it can be made out OK in the photos, it was difficult to get the camera to focus on these branches in particular. Can you tell me if this is another version of the invasive species, or is it OK to keep?

This looks to be yet another callery pear.