Tree Selection

One of the most important investment decisions a homeowner makes when landscaping is deciding what trees to plant. Replacement of diseased or dead trees or doing new landscaping can provide us an opportunity, as well as a big decision. Tree care professionals and nursery owners are often asked this question, but first there are decisions only the homeowner can make. 

Purpose of the Tree
First decide if you are planting this tree for shade, as a windbreak, to provide fall color, or as a privacy screen?. Or are you replacing a favorite tree that has died, and want another just like it? This is the most important question to ask yourself first. 

Location Factors
Next look at the size, location, wind exposure, amount of sunlight, and drainage of the area where you will plant your tree. Here you may want to get advice from a professional on what type and size of tree will thrive best in this location. Be sure to examine the other plantings in this area, and check for overhead wires, sidewalks, and utilities in this area. Check with JULIE to find general information about planting trees as well as checking out underground utilities for you.

Check soil conditions, and amend the soil if necessary.

Dedication of Time
Next be honest in your estimation of how much time you have for maintenance. Is this something you will do yourself, or will you need assistance from a garden or tree service? The first year after you plant is very important to the future health of your trees, and investing energy into your tree’s first year is very important. 

Once you have answered the questions above, you will be ready to talk to a professional tree person to help you decide which tree to plant. A certified arborist or cooperative extension agency will also be able to help you choose a tree resistant to pest problems in your area.

In brief, your choice should be suitable for your geographical region, able to thrive there, fit the site well and be aesthetically pleasing to you. You might also want to check our information on planting new trees.

Additional Resources