Tips on Choosing Trees for Your Landscape

Tips on Choosing Trees for Your Landscape
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Whether you are moving into a new house with an empty landscape, or an older home, you'll need to do your homework before planting trees. Do some research, visit some garden centers and figure out what is best for your property.
Our property only had one shade tree near the house, so I wanted something that was fairly fast growing, attractive and easy to grow. My first thought was a weeping willow, however, I discovered they need a water source close by or the roots will seek out the FIRST water they can find, and if that is your pipes then they will wrap around and crush them. Hmmm...not a good thing. Your local garden center can give you advice, but always keep in mind they are a business and want to sell you trees. It's better to do your own research first and then talk to them. You'll want to know your soil type, and if you need a drought tolerant tree, or one that can stand wet soil. Some trees are more prone to disease and pests, so keep that in mind too and ask about it. Look up your state county extension office for good tips, and also your conservation district office. They will often have tree and plant sales in the spring and fall.

There are some common tips for all us to remember, no matter what type of tree we plant. The tree should be about 25 foot from the house. Dig your hole big enough to hold the roots. If your soil seems really compacted then loosen it and mix in some organic material down and around at least 12 inches, if not more. Once your hole is dug, carefully place in the tree. Do not add fertilizer to the hole. Gently put the dirt back in the hole, do NOT pack it down with your foot or shovel. You don't want it to be compacted. To water, push the hose into the soil at the hole site to water it thoroughly, which will get rid of any air pockets. After the watering is done you can mulch with 2-3 inches of an organic material.

Remember when the trees are young you should water once a week during dry weather. This should be kept up at least during the first year, and the second to be sure it's established. Do not automatically stake the tree. They do this in the city frequently to protect them, but if you plant correctly it should be okay on it's own.

About the author:

Brenda Hyde is a wife and mom to three living in the Midwest United States. She is also editor of

Landscaping Resources

Spring Hill Nursery

Michigan Bulb

Henry Field's

Gurney's Seed&Nursery


White Flower Farm

Nature Hills Nursery


About The Author

Brenda Hyde is a freelance writer living on ten acres in rural Michigan with her husband and three kids. She is a mom, grandma, gardener, cook and writer. She blogs on all of these topics at


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