Can You Burn Bradford Pear Wood? Pros & Cons (Explained)

When it comes to using wood as a fuel source, many people wonder if they can burn specific types of wood, including Bradford pear wood. Bradford pears are a popular ornamental tree, but their wood may not be the first choice for burning due to various factors. So, can you burn Bradford pear wood?

Key Takeaways

  • Like other hardwoods, Bradford pear wood can be used as firewood. It is considered one of the best firewood options due to its moderate BTU (British Thermal Units) output and dense and heavy burning characteristics.
  • However, it’s important to note that using unseasoned wood can result in a strong and unpleasant odor and excessive smoke production. This smoke can potentially lead to creosote accumulation in chimneys or flues.
  • To ensure optimal burning conditions and avoid these issues, it is recommended to use dry and seasoned Bradford pear wood for burning purposes.

In this comprehensive guide, we will explore the burning properties of Bradford pear wood, discuss its advantages and limitations, and provide you with valuable insights to make an informed decision.

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Understanding Bradford Pear Wood

Bradford pear (Pyrus calleryana ‘Bradford’) is a deciduous tree commonly found in landscaping and gardens. It features beautiful white flowers in the spring and vibrant foliage in the fall, making it an attractive choice for many homeowners.

However, when it comes to the quality of the wood, Bradford pear has its limitations.

Can You Burn Bradford Pear Wood?

Yes, Bradford pear wood can be burned as firewood. However, there are a few things to consider before burning it. It’s recommended to properly season the wood properly by allowing it to dry for at least six months to a year before using it as firewood.

It’s important to note that some people find the smell of burning Bradford pear wood unpleasant. When burned, the wood can emit a strong, pungent odor, which may not be desirable in certain settings or for individuals with sensitivities.

If you plan to burn Bradford pear wood, it’s always a good idea to ensure proper ventilation and follow all safety guidelines for using a fireplace or wood-burning stove.


  • Exceptional coal production and clean burning properties.
  • Ideal for smoking meat and other food items.
  • High heat output, making it suitable for extremely cold climates.
  • Minimal spark production, ensuring safety during combustion.
  • Excellent coaling characteristics for efficient burning.
  • Leaves behind minimal creosote residue while burning.


  • Challenging to split by hand, requiring additional effort and tools.
  • Moist wood can lead to a smoky house and cause discomfort to the eyes.
  • Unseasoned wood has a higher tendency to produce sparks and smoke.
  • Unseasoned wood may emit a strong and unpleasant odor when burned.
  • Potential for creosote buildup in chimneys or flues, requiring regular maintenance and cleaning.

Bradford Pear Firewood BTU

Pear firewood has a heat output of approximately 26.5 million BTUs per cord. However, Bradford pear wood has a lower density than denser hardwoods such as oak or maple, leading to a comparatively lower BTU value.


One of the critical factors to consider when determining if a wood type is suitable for burning is its density. Bradford pear wood is relatively dense, which means it can provide a moderate amount of heat when burned.

Read More About: Best Wood For Fireplace

Moisture Content

The moisture content of wood is a crucial aspect to consider when evaluating its burnability. Green or freshly cut Bradford pear wood tends to have a high moisture content, making it challenging to burn efficiently.

To ensure optimal burning, it is essential to allow the wood to dry and season adequately. Seasoned Bradford pear wood with a moisture content of around 15-20% is more suitable for burning.

Smoking Nature of Bradford Pear Wood

When it comes to smoking food, Bradford pear wood can add a unique flavor to your dishes. However, it’s important to exercise caution and moderation.

Due to its moderate heat output and potential for more smoke generation, using Bradford pear wood solely for smoking purposes may not be as effective as other hardwood options like apple or hickory.

Nevertheless, if you have access to seasoned Bradford pear wood and wish to experiment with its smoky flavor, it can be used in combination with other woods for a subtle enhancement.

Environmental Considerations

When deciding on burning Bradford pear wood, it’s essential to be mindful of its environmental impact. Bradford pears are considered an invasive species in some regions, and burning the wood can contribute to the spread of seeds, potentially causing further ecological damage.

If you choose to burn Bradford pear wood, ensure that the trees are not invasive in your area and follow any local regulations regarding its disposal.

Safety Precautions

Regardless of the type of wood you choose to burn, it is crucial to prioritize safety. Always ensure you have a properly functioning fireplace or wood-burning stove that meets safety standards.

Follow the recommended guidelines for ventilation and chimney maintenance to prevent the buildup of creosote, which can lead to chimney fires.

Use appropriate protective gear and exercise caution when handling and storing firewood.

Alternative Uses for Bradford Pear Wood

In addition to burning Bradford Pear trees, there are several alternative ways to utilize this material. Instead of simply discarding the wood, it can be repurposed for various woodworking projects, such as crafting small furniture and decorative items or even transforming it into mulch.

If you have access to Bradford Pear wood but would rather not burn it, consider exploring these alternative uses.

Read More From Our Fireplace Guide:

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Bradford pear a softwood?

No, Bradford pear is a hardwood.

How long does it take for Bradford pear wood to dry?

The drying time for Bradford pear wood can vary, but it typically takes about 8 to 12 months to air-dry.

Can you burn pear tree wood in a fireplace?

Yes, pear tree wood can be burned in a fireplace. It provides a moderate heat output and pleasant fragrance when burned.

When is the best time to fell a pear tree for firewood?

The best time to fell a pear tree for firewood is during late autumn or winter when the tree is dormant.

Is pear firewood good for smoking meat?

Yes, pear firewood is good for smoking meat. It imparts a mild, sweet flavor that enhances the taste of the meat.

My Final Thoughts

Can you burn Bradford pear wood? Seasoned Bradford pear wood with a lower moisture content is recommended for more effective burning.

However, considering the environmental impact and alternative uses of this wood, it might be worth exploring other options for fuel sources.

As always, prioritize safety and follow local regulations when using any type of wood for burning.

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