Shade Tree Planting

Saturday, November 6th, 2010 by Jenny Watts
    • Holland flower bulbs are now available for fall planting. These lovely gems will bloom for you next spring.
    • Lettuce can be planted from starts for a quick fall crop
    • Garlic cloves can be planted now. Keep them watered and weeded through the winter and you will harvest healthy large bulbs next June.
    • Clove-scented stock is a bedding flower that likes cool weather. Plant them now to enjoy their pink, white and lavender blooms.
    • Fall is for planting! Make the most of the nice fall weather and plant shade trees, roses and spring-flowering bulbs this weekend.

Enhance your Living Environment with Shade Trees

Planting trees around your house creates a pleasant environment that invites you to spend more time outdoors, especially during the hot weather days of summer and fall. If you plant a tree where it will shade your home as it grows, you can greatly reduce the heat both inside and around the building. For a small investment, you can greatly increase the value of your property.

Trees planted on the south side of the house should grow tall enough to shade the roof. Summer sun is at a high angle and heats the roof much more than the south wall of the house. Sycamores and maples both grow large enough to do the job. On the south side, be sure to plant deciduous trees which will let the sun shine through in the winter.

Shading on the west side of the house can be very effective. Even if trees do not grow up and over the house, shading the western wall through the long hot afternoons will greatly improve the comfort indoors. Any medium-sized tree can do this job nicely.

Fruitless mulberry is a fast-growing shade tree, to 35 feet tall and wide. It can reach 20 feet by 20 feet in five years. Its large leaves offer considerable shade.

Purple Robe locust is a very showy tree in the spring when its purplish-pink flowers hang in long clusters like wisteria. It is fast-growing to 40 feet tall and well adapted to hot, dry areas.

Chinese pistache is one of the best trees for filtered shade. It grows 30 to 40 feet tall with a round crown. The leaves turn brilliant orange and red in the fall. It takes heat, tolerates most soils, and can be grown as a lawn tree or where it gets little summer water.

Autumn Fantasy maple is a beautiful, fast-growing tree to 50 feet tall and 40 feet wide. The large leaves consistently show very good fall color, turning a bright red as the weather cools.

Other large maples include October Glory, which has beautiful reddish-purple fall color, and Sun Valley, with reliable bright red fall leaves.

Sycamores are hard to beat when it comes to shade. These giant trees grow 40 to 80 feet tall. They can take harsh conditions, drought and tough soils. The bark is attractive as it flakes off leaving light-colored patches behind.

If you have plenty of room to spread out, there are few trees more beautiful than a large, spreading Weeping Willow. It’s a tree to grow up with, to enrich your lives with great memories.

If you need a little smaller tree, look to the Chinese maples. These tough trees can be planted closer to the house to provide shade for the front porch, or a sunny window. Two fine hybrids are Norwegian Sunset and Pacific Sunset, both with glossy summer leaves and red-yellow-orange fall color.

Fall is the best time to plant trees, so begin now to create a more pleasant environment around your home with trees.

Fall Beauty from Shade Trees

Friday, October 16th, 2009 by Jenny Watts
    • Garlic sets can be planted now for an easy crop that you can harvest next spring. Choose from hard-neck, soft-neck or Elephant garlic varieties now available.
    • Plant cover crops in the garden where summer plants have finished. Fava beans and crimson clover will grow through the winter and improve your soil for spring planting.
    • Plant pansies, snapdragons, stock, calendulas and primroses now to replace summer annuals.
    • Divide overgrown water lilies and irises. Repot using heavy soil with no organic matter or packaged Aquatic Planting Medium.
    • Crocus and daffodils announce the arrival of spring if you plant them now. Choose from a variety of colors and bi-colors available now.

Fall Beauty from Shade Trees

Fall is a wonderful time to plant trees. It gives them a chance to sink their roots into the soil over the winter so they are ready to make the most of the spring growth spurt. The cold nights of fall bring beautiful colors to the leaves of deciduous trees. Liquidambar, maples, Chinese pistache, Raywood ash, European white birch, dogwoods and flowering pear trees brighten the landscape with their colorful leaves. Now is a good time to choose trees that have fall color.

When choosing a tree, it is important to determine just how large a tree you want. Width is easy to measure and for height, figure that a building is about 10 feet tall per story, plus attic height. So a one-story house may be 15 to 20 feet tall, and a two-story house 25 to 30 feet tall. Most trees are at least 30 feet tall and some grow to 60 feet or more, providing good shade over the roof for summer cooling.

Liquidambar and European white birch are both tall, slender trees. White birch trees grow to 45 feet tall with a spread of 30 feet. They turn bright yellow or green and yellow in the fall. Their white bark is particularly attractive in winter.

Liquidambar trees grow to 60 feet tall with a narrow pyramidal form. Their fall colors range from yellow, peach and orange to red and burgundy. They are tall, stately trees which make good street trees where overhead wires are not a problem.

Chinese pistache is a round-headed tree that turns bright red in autumn. It is the most eye-catching tree around right now. It grows to 60 feet tall and 50 feet wide.

Raywood ash trees are fast-growing with fine-textured foliage making a dense, rounded crown. They grow to 35 feet with a 25-foot spread and turn a beautiful reddish-purple color in fall.

October Glory Red Maple is a beautiful, round tree growing 40 feet tall. Its glossy, green foliage turns a brilliant deep red to reddish purple in the fall, lasting for several weeks. It takes summer heat well but needs summer watering. Autumn Fantasy Maple is a large, fast-growing shade tree that consistently shows very good fall color. They are bright rose-red now and very eye-catching.

Flowering pear trees are known for their beautiful white spring blossoms as well as their bright red fall foliage. They grow to 35 feet tall with a 25-foot spread, and turn color late in the fall season, holding their colorful leaves most of the winter.

Dogwood trees are beautiful small trees growing 20 feet tall and wide. In spring, white, pink or red blossoms cover the tree and in fall their round leaves turn beautiful shades of red. Japanese maples are another small tree with delicate green or red leaves throughout the summer which turn a bright scarlet in the fall.

Trees are such an important part of any landscape that one must give plenty of thought to finding just the right one. Fall gives you the opportunity to become acquainted with some new and interesting specimens that may prove to be that special one you’ve been looking for.

Enjoy the beauty of fall with colorful trees in your landscape.