Buy Back offered on invasive Bradford pear trees in Missouri


The Bradford pear tree was introduced to North America in the 1960s from China and Taiwan, brought by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Soon the medium-sized landscaping tree became the most popular ornamental tree, prized for its glorious blooms in spring and long-lasting colors in autumn.

But its strong odor has become a problem for many and the tree creates a mess when the blooms fall. The trees choke out other plants and cost countless hours and resources to clear them from native woodlands.

Missouri Department of Conservation is holding several events throughout the state where they will "buy back" a cut-down Bradford pear tree for a native tree. MDC Forestry Program Supervisor Russell Hinnah said:

The Callery pear became a popular ornamental landscape tree in the 1960s because it was inexpensive, it grew fast and provided those eye-catching blooms in the spring, But that’s where its benefits end. Different varieties of the tree were planted close to each other, which resulted in cross-pollination and they took over natural areas.MDC encourages homeowners and landscapers to grow native when picking a tree to plant.

Participants must register by visiting They will also need to submit a photo of themselves next to their cut-down Callery pear tree in order to receive one replacement tree.

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