How to Fertilize Pear Trees


Though folks are often intimidated by the thought of tending an orchard, fruit trees don't require any special sort of fertilizer. You can choose between an organic compost, well-dried manure or a commercial mix, which could be any complete fertilizer. You can even mix compost and manure together to create your own custom blend. The most important part of fertilizing pear trees is knowing exactly when to apply the fertilizer, and it isn't as often as you might think.

Step 1

Mix a small amount of fish emulsion (a few tablespoons) with water and apply every other watering when helping a newly planted pear tree get established. Continue this practice from the planting through the tree's dormancy in winter.

Step 2

Apply organic compost or well-dried manure to the base of the tree, raking it in to a depth of about 6 inches, if you notice poor growth. Alternately, apply a commercial fertilizer blend designated for fruit trees according to package directions.

Step 3

Wait for the tree to reap the benefits of the fertilizer and watch for growth and fruiting before applying fertilizer again.

Step 4

Fertilize only if you notice poor growth on the tree; otherwise, let the tree take care of itself by pulling up nutrients from the soil.

Tips and Warnings

  • "Gardening for Dummies" states that over-fertilizing fruit trees can cause the fruit to become too soft, lose its flavor and be more susceptible to brown rot. Thus, it's best to skip the fertilizing unless you notice that the tree needs it.

Things You'll Need

  • Fish emulsion
  • Watering can
  • Organic compost, well-dried manure or commercial fertilizer mix
  • Rake


  • "Gardening for Dummies"; by Michael MacCaskey, Bill Marken, and the Editors of the National Gardening Association; 2005
  • "The Big Book of Gardening Skills"; Gardenway Editors; 1993
Keywords: pear trees, growing pears, fertilizing fruit trees

About this Author

Annie Mueller is a writer, editor, professional blogger, website designer, and tutor. She attended Missouri Baptist College and earned her Bachelor of Arts in English from Mississippi State University, with a Summa Cum Laude standing. She has written extensively on gardening, parenting, education, and personal growth for women.