We've planted five trees in our backyard in the 10 years we've lived in Calftown. Two of the them are pear trees and there were a lot of pears this year. But strangely enough, one day the tree had tons of pears, and the very next day most of the them were gone. We assume the squirrels came by in a gang and carted them all away.
When we bought the house in 2009, there was a nasty sweet gum tree that dropped those spiky balls. We had it removed in a year and replaced by another tree. Sheryl spent the next five years picking up the spiky balls that had been ground into the soil.
It's nice and shady back there now. I sat in the backyard last night as dusk settled in and thought about how nice it is to have a shady spot to sit and contemplate life.
But the front of the house looks much better and all the other trees have room to breathe, so we are happy.