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Want to Add Trees to Your Yard? How to Choose the Right Species

Part of the satisfaction of having your own property is that you can landscape the accompanying yard to suit your taste. That includes planting trees. Since you and your neighbors will probably have to live with the trees for years, if not decades, you need to choose the right trees and plant them in the right places. You neighbor will not appreciate it if you plant trees that overshadow a lot of their property or drop branches on it. Other considerations include the following:



While you can keep a seedling or even a sapling indoors, sooner or later you will have to plant your tree outside, and different trees have different climate requirements. The USDA provides a Plant Hardiness Zone map that is based on the average annual minimum temperature during winter. Each Zone is numbered; the lower the number, the colder the climate. The map is interactive, and you can check the Hardiness Zones within your state or Zip code. Organizations like the Arbor Day Foundation use Hardiness Zones to recommend trees that will grow well in a given area.


Trees come in a variety of shapes and sizes, and you need to consider how big the tree will be when it reaches maturity. You don’t, for example, want a tall tree near powerlines. Thus, when researching trees that will grow well in your Hardiness Zone, you need to check their adult size to make certain you will have space for it. This is especially true if you have gardens or other trees on your property. You don’t want to plant a shade tree next to a garden full of plants that need full sun.

Deciduous or evergreen

Deciduous trees are those that periodically shed their leaves, while evergreens retain their leaves throughout the year. In temperate climates, deciduous trees usually shed their leaves in the fall; in tropical climates, they usually shed them during the dry season. Fruit trees are all deciduous, and some deciduous trees, such as maples, are known for their spectacular autumn colors. The downside is that you will eventually have to rake all those pretty leaves. If you hate the very idea of raking, you may want an evergreen tree.


One way to reduce the amount of care a tree will need is to pick one that is native to the area. It will thus already be adapted to the conditions and will need relatively little care. People in arid or drought-prone areas, for example, practice a type of landscaping called “xeriscaping,” in which they use plants with minimal water requirements. They thus don’t need to irrigate their plants or otherwise water them a lot. A tree that is well-adapted to the environment will be under less stress and thus less vulnerable to disease or pests.

Choosing the right trees for a landscaping project can lead to satisfying results that the entire family can enjoy. It will require homework, but it will be worth it in the end.


Author Bio:  Meghan Belnap is a freelance writer who enjoys spending time with her family. She loves being in the outdoors and exploring new opportunities whenever they arise. Meghan finds happiness in researching new topics that help to expand her horizons. You can often find her buried in a good book or out looking for an adventure. You can connect with her on Facebook right here and Twitter right here.



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