Registration Is Open for 2023 Callery Pear “Buyback”

Photo: MDC, David Stonner.

The Missouri Invasive Plant Council (MoIP), in partnership with Forest ReLeaf of Missouri, Forrest Keeling Nursery, and the Missouri Department of Conservation, will host a Callery pear “buyback” program in locations around the state on April 18.

Registration is open March 15 – April 13 for participants to choose their location, register with EventBrite, select a native tree, and upload a photo of the cut-down Callery pear tree. One free, non-invasive, native tree is provided to registered participants at the selected location on the day of the event, April 18, from 3–6 p.m. (Note: Kansas City has different dates and times.)

Invasive Tree Causes Ecological Concern: Native to China, Callery pear trees (Pyrus calleryana) include 26 cultivars that present significant ecological concerns in Missouri. Some of the most common cultivars offered commercially include Aristocrat, Autumn Blaze, Bradford, Capital, Cleveland, Chanticleer, Red-spire, and Whitehouse.

How to ID the Tree: Callery pear limbs generally grow vertically, forming a pyramid or egg shape. Typically in early April, very dense clusters of white flowers cover the tree before leaves form. In maturity, they reach heights of 30 to 40 feet. Property owners should cut trees during spring, when they are easy to identify, as a means to reduce populations from spreading in unwanted areas.

How the Invasive Tree Spreads: Individual cultivars generally do not produce fertile seeds on their own. However, insect pollination of flowers with other cultivars on nearby properties can produce fertile seeds, carried by birds, that sprout and establish wherever they are dispersed. Each year, older trees in urban landscapes produce viable seeds that contribute to growing infestations. Breaking this cycle begins with choosing native, non-invasive trees for future plantings and controlling existing invasive populations.

Participants will receive potted native trees, donated by Forest ReLeaf and Forrest Keeling Nursery, in 3-gallon containers that stand between 2- and 4-feet tall. The trees are young and small to ensure the least amount of stress on the tree in the planting process, as well as easier transportation.

To register or for more information about this event, including a full list of native tree species offered, visit, or contact MoIP Coordinator Emily Render, (573) 569-8659, at

One response to “Registration Is Open for 2023 Callery Pear “Buyback”

  1. I am so glad we at EE passed 50,000 hits this year, but how can EE’s great information still be a long way toward 100,000 hits, while Selena Gomez has 6,000,000 Twitter followers? No wonder the environment is in peril!


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