Ornamental Trees for Your Yard

Trees can be a great addition to any yard. They are beautiful to look at, and can provide shade or even fruit. Large trees can take years to grow, and they can be a hazard if you live in a natural disaster-prone area. However smaller trees can create a nice accent to both your front and back yards. In honor of Earth Day and Arbor Day, we’re going to go over what you need to know about planting ornamental trees near your home.


1.) Ask yourself what you’re looking for

Why do you want to plant a tree? Are you looking for shade? Flowers? Fruit? Something decorative to cover up your hot water tank? If you’re looking for decorative foliage, think about getting an evergreen tree that won’t drop it’s leaves in the fall and winter, revealing whatever you were trying to cover up. If you’re looking for shade to sit under in the summer, think about whether your tree will attract birds or bees that would make your tree a less desirable location to sit under.

2.) Research your area.

You shouldn’t have a husky as a pet if you live at the southern tip of Florida, and you shouldn’t have an apple tree either. Research which trees thrive best where you live. You might have to give up your dream of an apple tree if you live in the South, but you can compromise with many other fruit trees, including fig, banana, orange and kumquat. While climate is a major point of consideration, it shouldn’t be the only one. Consider your immediate surrounding area. Some trees are able to hold up in more urban areas with air pollution and artificial lighting, and some do better in alkaline soil. A little research about your area now will save you lot in the long run.


3.) Location

Decide where you’re going to plant your tree. If you want a flowering tree, plant it away from the house or any recreational areas so you don’t have to worry about insects. Plant trees at least 5 feet away from the sidewalk to avoid interference with roots. Similarly, don’t plant trees too close to the house. A good rule of thumb is to calculate the tree’s widest reach once it reaches full maturity, divide that number in half and plant it at least that many feet away from your house. Last but not least, check to be sure that your “perfect location” doesn’t interfere with any underground pipes or other lines.


As we’ve seen, the perfect tree for you depends largely on your specific situation: where you live, your environment and your home’s needs. However here are some popular options for you to consider:


Baby Colorado spruce (evergreen)


Flowering dogwood (flowers)


Japanese Maple (foliage)


Pawpaw/papaya (fruit)

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