Pear trees are a great choice for the edible garden. They are more disease resistant than apple trees, come in a variety of cultivars, sizes, and tastes. If you are planting pear trees, plan on including at least 2 trees as all pear species with only a few exceptions require another tree to aid in pollination.
There are over 3000 varieties of pear trees, with the majority of fruit production coming from China. Pears are generally harvested when just underripe and come grafted onto different rootstock including dwarf, semi-dwarf, and regular sized trees. Pear trees are bets planted in the spring, though they can also be planted in the fall and should be pruned in the late winter before the buds open and flower.
Cover Image by Michelle Brunner, used under its Creative Commons license.