Why does the City of Carmel want to cut down pear trees?

The Callery Pear Tree is on list of the most invasive trees in Indiana by several organizations. The tree was once thought to be sterile, but evidence shows that thanks to birds and their movements in the winter, these trees multiply quite quickly. When they do, they invade open spaces such as pastures, grassland and open woodlands and then proceed to quickly and densely fill in these spaces, making it impossible for other native plants, trees and animals to survive.

Because of that, the pear tree is one of several trees, shrubs and other plants that are no longer recommended for planting. There are many authoritative information sources for determining invasive tree species. The Hamilton County Invasives Partnership (HIP) is helpful resource with invasive plant information and weblinks on their website. Another good homegrown source is The Indiana Native Plant Society (INPS). Their website provides numerous links to information regarding native plants and invasive plant species. The INPS is also connected with organizations who make up the Invasive Plant Species Assessment Work Group (IPSAWG).

The Indiana Invasive Species Council (IISC) maintains an official Invasive Plant List. The IISC has also published a letter to the Nursery Trades regarding the Callery Pear, found here.

The City of Carmel has not planted ornamental pears in the public right-of-way since 2000. The City has a track record of removing other invasive (Princess Tree and Tree of Heaven) as part of normal maintenance practices.

Authored by Laura Campbell, Sue Finkam, Kevin Rider, Jeff Worrell, Sue Finkam, Miles Nelson, Anthony Green and Adam Aasen.