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When we bought this house (we really need to name the poor girl already), a friend of mine said, “Yeah, your yard is full of Bradford Pear trees. Those things split like crazy when they get old.” Both B and his dad had said the same thing many times. But they came with the house. So we took them.

And then one day in late August of this year, we got a tiny little rainstorm. So tiny none of the rain hit our neighborhood, just a little rambling wind. Like a sigh. And one of our Bradford Pear trees decided to commemorate our one-year anniversary of living in this house by splitting itself in two for no reason at all.

bradford pear tree split

B happened to be outside on the porch when it happened. We took these photos right after it happened (on my cell phone). As you can see, the skies are not crazy-looking. The tree leaves aren’t even waving. There was no reason to cut yourself in two, Tree.bradford pear tree split

Thus began the long process of cleaning up the branches. The above shot was taken after we’d cleaned up a good two-thirds of the branches (Scout helped).

We cut them into smaller portions that we could handle and dragged them to the front yard for pickup.

Now we’re left with the exposed trunk to deal with. Do we cover it with something? We’ve heard everything from products you can buy to simply painting over it (weird to anyone else?). Will the rest of the tree die?

But while we’re on the subject of the backyard, let me update you on the playground set we thought we had successfully found a new home for via CraigsList.


The aforementioned deal fell through. Every time someone came over to look at it, they said, “Oh! This is way bigger than I thought it would be. I don’t think I can take this home after all.”

Then we discovered that it was infested with wasps, carpenter bees, and Black Widows. That’s right. All three. So we chopped that bad boy down.


In stages, granted. It’s huge.

bradford pear tree split

As of yesterday, the only thing left to dispose of is the slide. Honestly, we hated cutting it up. We really wanted to see it find a new home where it could be enjoyed. It’s an expensive playset, and would’ve made some kids very happy. But once we discovered all the bugs in the wood, we realized that we couldn’t in good conscious ask someone to bring it into their home. (Also, can you imagine how horrible it would’ve been to discover this while they worked to break it into moveable sections? As it was, B was lucky, with only one wasp sting while disassembling everything.)bradford pear tree splitSo now we have a rather large patch of sand and dirt to deal with. B called the home improvement big box stores in our area, only to learn that sod is seasonal. So I think we’re going to have to either find a local place that has some or put down seed.

So the yard has been surprisingly consuming the last few weeks. Who would’ve thought? Now every time I see the remaining three Bradford Pear trees we have (including the massive one in our front yard), I can’t help but picture what might happen when they join their comrade and split apart. Please, trees, avoid the house, will you?