While the pear is far less widely planted than the apple tree, these trees have been cultivated in the United States since 1630 and grow quite well in the Virginia weather. Most of the common pear varieties will receive sufficient chill hours to produce good fruit and will not sustain frost damage due to winter colds. Virginia gardeners can plant either Asian or European pears. Recommended cultivars include Bartlett, D'Anjou, Comice and Bosc.
Soak a bare-root pear tree in water for at least 30 minutes prior to planting. If you're planting a container pear tree, skip this step.
Dig a hole for your pear tree that is just as deep as the tree's root ball and twice as wide as the root ball. Remove any sticks, stones or weeds from the site. At the bottom of the hole, jab your shovel into the dirt to roughen up the soil. This helps the pear tree's roots grasp the soil.
Remove a container pear tree from its container by grasping the trunk and pulling up. Its roots will be all wound and tangled. Gently unwind and untangle the roots with your fingers. Planting a pear tree with roots that are tangled may lead the tree to choke later.
Set a bare-root or container pear tree in the hole so it's at the same depth as it was planted before, or so the highest-up roots rest 4 inches below the top of the soil. Check to ensure the pear is straight. Cover up the hole with soil, but do not compress the soil.
Water the newly planted pear until the soil compresses around the roots. Use at least 2 gallons per tree.
Things You Will Need
- Pear sapling
- The Virginia Cooperative Extension recommends planting pear trees as early as the ground can be worked. Dormant or bare-root trees can be purchased and planted in the late fall or winter, while container trees should be planted in March or April. Trees planted in May or June will have a difficult time adapting, since the weather is hotter.