When you add a tree to your property, you not only increase its value and add beauty to the landscape — you leave a legacy. Because the tree you choose may last many lifetimes, you want to make sure it’s the right one. There is a huge variety of different types of trees that you can choose from. Much the same as with any decision about your yard, there are definitely both pros and cons to which kind of trees you decide to plant.
Why do you want it?
When picking out your tree, one of the first questions you need to ask yourself is, “What will I be using the tree for?” Are you trying to fill in bare patches around your façade? Want to plant a hedge to keep nosy neighbors at bay? Do you want to watch flowers bloom every spring and take your breath away? It is important to assess the why behind your trees prior to making any final decisions.
Do you want a tree that is close to full size quickly or are you okay to wait until much later? The slowest-growing trees are often the longest lived, so keep that in mind. If you’re looking for something you can plant quickly, and have nice-looking flowers to enjoy fast, that’s fine, too. But don’t forget that these trees may not last for generations, if that’s something you were planning on.
If you’re going to put a tiny tree in your front yard next to your one-story ranch, that works nicely. Going for that huge oak instead? You may want to reconsider. Scale your tree to the size of the structure it’s closest to, and your entire property will look proportionate.
How much mess are you comfortable with?
Let’s face it, certain types of trees require a lot more maintenance than others. Depending on the climate you reside in, a large number of tree species will completely lose their leaves in the fall. The size of the leaves will help determine how much cleanup will be required as smaller leaves can be harder to rake up and dispose of. Certain types of trees shed bark seasonally as well. This is another thing that needs to be raked up and disposed of. Another important question is how does the tree seed? Many species of trees will leave a trail of seeds underneath them during certain times of the year as well. You may also consider how much water a certain type of tree requires, and how you might go about regulating how much water it gets.
The addition of trees to your yard is very rarely a bad decision. Just be sure that you are planting the right type for your circumstances.