The Ultimate Tree Guide

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Thinking about planting some trees on your property? If you don’t put careful consideration into the selection of trees, you may not end up with the results you hoped for. Before you start planting, refer to this tree guide for help.

How to Select Front Yard or Backyard Trees

Before planting front yard or backyard trees, think about the property conditions, space and benefits you would like them to provide. Obviously, the help of a professional is invaluable, but the following considerations will get you thinking of possibilities.

What to plant

In creating a tree planting scheme, you must match your desired benefits with the appropriate tree species and site condition. After all, each tree type has needs to meet to grow in a healthy and vigorous way.

  • Are you looking for flowering, fruit-bearing or fast-growing shade trees?
  • Are you hoping the tree provides energy savings?
  • Is there direct sunlight available or mostly shade?
  • Does the soil retain water or drain well?
  • Is the soil acidic or alkaline?
  • Are there any nearby structures or utilities to consider?

Species selection

Once the soil and site conditions are evaluated, you can factor in your personal preferences when choosing the tree species. This is when you can decide on different tree shapes and sizes, flowering or fruit bearing types, and colors and texture.

Where to plant

Looking for front yard landscaping trees or are you focusing on the backyard? When deciding where to plant a tree, it’s best to have ample space—both above and below ground. When trees can grow to full maturity, they are healthier and require less maintenance. Plant your tree in the wrong place and you can wind up with power outages, damaged sidewalks and driveways, and obstructed views.

Pro tips: Deciduous, fast growing shade trees should be planted on the south and west sides of your house to provide cooling shade in the summer and home warmth from the sun in the winter. For morning shade, plant trees on the southeast exposure of the house. For afternoon shade, plant them on the southwest exposure. Evergreen trees placed on northern exposure will screen or block frigid winter winds.

Tree Form and Shape

Different species of trees have different crown forms, including oval, round, pyramid, weeping, columnar and spreading. Trees with low-spreading branches are suitable for screens, but not along driveways where visibility is vital. Columnar or upright trees are best for medians and property boundaries, but not for providing shade for a house. Selecting the right form will help achieve your landscape goals, boost your property value and lower maintenance costs.

Talk to a Pro

This tree guide is a great way to get an idea of your landscape’s potential, but a professional tree company will help you make the best decision. Consult with one today!