Tips and Tricks for Successfully Cultivating Bartlett Pear Trees and Williams Pear Trees


Growing Bartlett pear trees and Williams pear trees can be a rewarding experience for those who appreciate the seasonality and beauty of fruit trees. These trees are known for their lush foliage and can be grown in a variety of climates. If you are considering growing Bartlett or Williams pear trees, there are several tips and techniques for maintaining healthy and fruitful trees.

When growing Bartlett or Williams pear trees, it is important to choose a location that receives full sunlight throughout the day. These trees require at least six hours of direct sunlight for optimal growth and fruit production. Additionally, well-draining soil is essential for the survival of the trees. Adding peat moss or compost to the soil can help improve drainage and provide essential nutrients for the trees.

One of the first steps in growing Bartlett or Williams pear trees is selecting a healthy tree for transplanting. It is recommended to purchase trees from reputable nurseries or online retailers that specialize in fruit trees. When transplanting the tree, be sure to dig a hole that is deep enough to accommodate the root ball and wide enough to allow the roots to spread out. After planting, water the tree thoroughly to help establish root growth.

Proper pruning is important for the health and growth of Bartlett and Williams pear trees. Prune the trees during the dormant season, which is typically in late winter or early spring. Remove any dead or diseased branches, as well as any branches that are crossing or rubbing against each other. Pruning helps improve airflow within the tree, reduces the risk of disease, and promotes better fruit production.

When it comes to overwintering Bartlett and Williams pear trees, it is important to protect the trees from extreme cold and heat. Cover the base of the tree with a layer of mulch to insulate the roots during winter. You can also wrap the trunk of the tree with burlap or a tree wrap to protect it from freezing temperatures. In hotter regions, providing shade and regular watering can help prevent heat stress.

Harvesting Bartlett pears can be a quick and easy process, as they ripen relatively quickly after picking. Bartlett pears are known for their excellent flavor and are typically ready to harvest when they turn from green to yellow. Gently twist the pear from the tree, or use pruning shears to cut the stem right above the fruit. Store the harvested pears in a cool, dark place to extend their shelf life.

Propagation of Bartlett and Williams pear trees can be done through several methods, including grafting and taking cuttings. Grafting involves joining a scion (the desired variety) to a rootstock to create a new tree. Taking cuttings is another way to propagate pear trees, where a stem cutting is taken from a healthy tree and rooted in a growing medium. Both methods have their own advantages and can be successful with proper technique and care.

In conclusion, growing Bartlett and Williams pear trees can be a rewarding endeavor for any fruit tree enthusiast. By following the tips and techniques mentioned above, you can ensure that your pear trees stay healthy, productive, and provide you with a bountiful harvest for years to come.


The Bartlett pear, also known as Williams pear, is a popular variety of pear tree. It is known for its light and fresh flavor, making it a favorite choice for eating fresh or canning. Bartlett pears are pale yellow when fully ripe and have a smooth and juicy texture.

When growing Bartlett pear trees, it is important to provide them with the right conditions. They prefer a fertile and well-draining soil, and they need at least 600 chill hours to flower and set fruit. Bartlett pear trees also require full sun exposure to thrive.

To maintain the Bartlett pear tree, regular pruning is necessary. This helps to shape the tree, promote airflow, and remove any dead or diseased branches. Pruning should be done during the dormant season, typically in late winter or early spring.

Harvesting Bartlett pears can be done when the fruits are still slightly green. They will continue to ripen off the tree. Once harvested, it is important to store the pears in a cool and dry place, away from other fruits or vegetables. They can also be stored in the refrigerator for a longer shelf life.

The Bartlett pear trees are susceptible to pests and diseases, such as voles and fire blight. To protect the trees, it is recommended to plant them on rootstock that is resistant to these issues. Additionally, providing proper care, such as regular watering and fertilizing, can help prevent these problems.

There are more than 100 cultivars of the Bartlett pear, but the original Bartlett remains the most common and popular. However, if you’re looking for a different flavor or seasonality, there are other options available. Some popular Bartlett pear tree cultivars include Kieffer, which is a semi-hardwood tree, and Bosc, which has a beautiful green color.

Whether you’re buying a Bartlett pear tree or transplanting an existing one, follow the proper steps to ensure its successful establishment. This includes digging a wide hole, adding compost or organic matter to the soil, and watering regularly. It is also recommended to apply a rooting hormone to make rooting easier.

In conclusion, Bartlett pears are a delicious and versatile fruit that can be enjoyed fresh, cooked, or canned. Growing Bartlett pear trees requires proper maintenance and care, but the rewarding harvest is worth the effort. With the right conditions, these trees can thrive and produce an abundance of flavorful pears.


The Bartlett pear trees and Williams pear trees have a specific seasonality for their growth and harvest. Each variety has its own timeline and requirements to ensure healthy and successful growth.

When it comes to planting young pear trees, it is best to do so in early spring or late fall. This way, they have enough time to establish their root system before the harsh summer heat or winter frost sets in. Before planting, make sure to choose a sunny location with well-draining soils.

Once planted, these fast-growing fruit trees need regular maintenance to thrive. During their first three years of growth, young Bartlett and Williams pear trees should be pruned to promote branching and overall tree structure. This helps in creating a strong and stable tree that can support future fruit production. Fertilizer can also be applied each spring to provide the necessary nutrients for healthy growth.

In terms of exposure, these pear trees prefer full sun, as it enhances fruit quality and sweetness. However, they can tolerate partial shade if needed, although it may result in decreased fruit production.

As the growing season progresses, these pear trees will start to bloom in the spring. The blooms are beautiful with their white or light pink colors, and they attract pollinators such as bees. The blooms will eventually give way to small, yellow-green fruits that will mature and turn yellow upon harvest.

To maintain tree health and protect against pests, it is important to follow proper pest management practices. One common pest for pear trees is the psylla, a small insect that can damage leaves and fruit. Regular monitoring and appropriate pest control measures can help keep psylla populations in check.

When it comes to harvesting, Bartlett and Williams pear trees usually bear fruit in late summer or early fall, depending on the climate. The pears should be harvested when they have reached their mature size and are easily detached from the tree with a gentle twist. Harvesting should be done carefully to avoid damaging the tree or the fruit.

Once harvested, these pears have a multitude of culinary uses. They can be eaten fresh, used in cooking and baking, or preserved in various forms such as jams and jellies. Their sweetness and juicy texture make them a popular choice for many dishes.

Overall, Bartlett and Williams pear trees are hardy and reliable fruit trees that can provide bountiful harvests with proper care and maintenance. Whether you choose to start with seeds, cuttings or buy young trees from a nurseryman, following proper planting and maintenance practices will help ensure their success.

For more information and resources on how to grow Bartlett and Williams pear trees, the following links can be a helpful guide:


Once the pear tree is young and begins to produce fruit, it’s important to learn how to ripen the pears properly to ensure they can be enjoyed to their fullest potential.

First, it’s important to water the tree regularly, especially during dry spells, to ensure the pear tree is well hydrated. This will help the fruit develop and ripen properly.

The Bartlett pear, also named the Williams pear, is one of the most popular pear cultivars. It is known for its excellent flavor and juicy texture when fully ripened. The Bartlett pear is usually ripe when the skin turns from green to yellow, and it easily separates from the branch when gently lifted.

One useful trick to determine if a Bartlett pear is ripe is to check if the fruit has a sweet fragrance and can be easily pressed with your thumb. If these criteria are met, then the pear is ready to be enjoyed!

One common challenge in ripening pears is avoiding them becoming overripe. The Bartlett pears can ripen quickly, and if they’re not eaten or preserved in time, they can become too soft and mushy. Therefore, it’s important to keep an eye on them and consume or store them as soon as they achieve their desired ripeness.

It’s also important to store the ripened Bartlett pears properly. They should be kept in a cool area with good airflow to maintain their freshness. Make sure to avoid storing them near vegetables, as the ethylene gas released by the vegetables can speed up the ripening process.

If you have harvested pears from your own tree, it’s a good idea to sterilize them before consuming or storing them. This can be done by washing them with a solution of 10% bleach and 90% water. Rinse the pears thoroughly with clean water after sterilizing them.

There are various methods to ripen pears at home. One method is to place the pears in a brown paper bag along with a ripe banana or apple. This will speed up the ripening process, thanks to the gas these fruits produce.

If you prefer a better controlled method, you can store the pears in the refrigerator until they reach the desired ripeness. However, make sure to take them out and allow them to reach room temperature before consuming them for better flavor and texture.

Additionally, if you have more pears than you can consume or share with friends and family, you can try preserving them. Pears can be canned, made into jams or jellies, or even used in various recipes for delicious desserts.

Overall, learning how to properly ripen Bartlett pear trees is essential to enjoy their sweet taste and juicy texture. With proper watering, monitoring for ripeness, and careful storage, you can ensure a successful harvest of delicious pears.

✿ Read More About Fruit Trees.

Dr Heidi Parkes

By Dr Heidi Parkes

Senior Information Extension Officer QLD Dept of Agriculture & Fisheries.