Plant ornamental pears as individual specimens in the yard to showcase their spring flowers and fall foliage to best effect. Use them to line property frontage or long drives. The narrower ones, such as ‘Whitehouse’ or ‘Capitol’, are good for tight spots or make excellent street trees. They also adapt well to espalier training, flat against a south facing wall. after a few years
Pear blossoms are lovely in floral arrangements. Budded branches can be forced to bloom indoors in March or later. Blossoming occurs in two to five weeks. The closer you cut them to their normal bloom time, the sooner they will bloom indoors.
Cut stems with small flower buds early in the morning on a mild day. Slit the woody ends and then soak them in a bucket of warm water for 3 to 4 hours so they can absorb as much moisture as possible. Strip off any leaves that will be under the water level in their container. Fill it up with more water and place them in a cool, dimly lit room until the buds swell and begin to show color. This will be in about 2 to 4 weeks. Change the water periodically during this time.
When color shows in the buds, arrange the branches in a display vase with fresh water laced with floral conditioner or some citrus-based carbonated soda (not diet) to help prolong flower bloom when they open. Bring them into a bright room where they can be appreciated and lift winter weary spirits. They will last about one week if they are not in direct sunlight.
To display flowering branches in season, cut them just as the buds are showing color. Put them in water right away as described above. Display them alone or combined with other blooms that appear at this time. For more information see the files on Keeping Cut Flowers and Cut Flower Supplies