Deciduous trees are those that drop their leaves in late fall and go dormant for the winter season. They re-leaf in the spring with the return of more sunlight and warmer temperatures. While most people choose a tree for its shade, growth rate, or flowers alone, there are other considerations that are equally important.

Consider these parameters as you select a deciduous tree for your landscape:

• Consider how big (height and width) the tree will be when mature. Will it fit into the space you have available? Will it interfere with overhead wires?

• Choose a tree that matches your site conditions. Will it get the proper sun exposure, and moisture?

• Make sure your selection fulfills the function you want the plant to serve – whether for shade, screening, or spring flowers.

• Select a tree that is resistant to known pests and diseases, if possible.

• Finally, be aware of the amount of maintenance required. Some trees require lots of attention to thrive. Others, if misplaced in the landscape, can become maintenance headaches, such as large trees planted in small spaces that constantly need pruning.

Trees have both scientific and common names. While most people find common names easier to remember, it is important to realize that some plants have multiple common names, but only one scientific name. Therefore, the scientific name is more specific, and you can be certain that you are buying the tree you want. Trees in nurseries are usually tagged with the scientific name, but not always the common name. Know your tree’s name when you go shopping for it.

Northwest Ohio is situated in hardiness zone 5. The hardiness zones give us information as what trees can survive winter temperature extremes. The following trees are suitable for zone 5:

Small deciduous trees grow in areas when planting is at least 15 feet from nearest tree or structure. Also used in areas where overhead utility lines are present. These trees have an average height and spread between 15-30 feet. Examples of some small trees include Malus spp. (Crabapples), Cercis canadensis (Eastern Redbud), Carpinus (Hornbeam), Crataegus (Hawthorne), Syringa reticulate (Japanese Tree Lilac), and Amalanchier (Serviceberry)

Medium deciduous trees grow in areas when planting is at least 25 feet from nearest tree or structure. May also be used in areas where taller overhead utility lines are present. These trees have an average height and spread between 30-45 feet.

Examples of some medium trees include:

Acer platanoides (Norway Maples), Acer truncatum x Acer platanoides (Sunset Maples), Tilia Cordata (Little Leaf Linden), Betula nigra (River Birch), and Ulmus parvifolia (Lacebark Elms)

Large deciduous trees grow in areas when planting is at least forty feet from nearest tree or structure. Never planted where overhead utility lines are present. These trees have an average height and spread of 45 feet or more. Examples of some large trees include Ulmus parvifolia ‘Emer II’ (Allee Elm),

Gymnocladus dioicus (Kentucky Coffee Tree), Gleditsia triacanthos “Shademaster” (Shademaster Honey locust), Acer freemanii (Freeman Maples), Celtis occidentalis (Hackberry), Tilia Americana euchlora (Redmond Linden), Platanus x acerifolia (London Planetree) and Quercus Spp. (White Oaks).

Conifer trees are trees that retain their needles through the winter and are also considered Large Trees Conifers grow in areas when planting is at least 20 feet from nearest tree or structure.

Never plant where overhead utility lines are present. These trees have an average height and spread between 35-40 feet.

A couple examples of Conifers include (Picea spp.) Colorado, Norway, and White Spruce and Pinus spp. (Austrian, White, and Scotch Pine).

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