If you're planning on incorporating Bradford pear (Pyrus calleryana, also known as Callery pear) into your landscaping or street plantings, you may want to reconsider. As reported in the Washington Post and also in the Newark Star Ledger (must enter zip code etc. to access article), the trees are falling (pun intended) left and right since Hurricane Isabella blew through a couple of weeks ago. The Callery pear, a tree native to Asia, has been widely planted along streets in the eastern U.S., and is admired for its beautiful white flowers. Unfortunately, the trees are now also known for their short lifespan (around twenty years) and their tendency to break apart all the way down to the trunk.
Thanks to a member of the Yahoo! group ma-eppc for posting the Post story.