Creating a tree landscape is a flexible way of adding functionality and beauty to your yard, as well as telling a unique story about the property. Trees are not only decorative, but they also can provide shade, flowers and even fruit, in some cases. Finding trees to fit your landscape plan can help build the foundation for the entire landscape.
Trees are very popular with do-it-yourself landscapers. They clean out air and add shade to a yard, making it possible to enjoy the outdoors during the daytime. They can also act as natural insulators, reducing home air-conditioning and heating costs by a significant margin.
Keep in mind the sentimental value of trees, as well. As part of a residence's landscape, planting a tree can be a symbol of the longevity and strength of the family that lives there.
Evergreen trees are fast-growing, disease-resistant trees that are usually thick and planted close together to provide privacy or wind protection. As the name implies, the thick foliage lasts throughout the year, and the trees can be found in a variety of shapes and sizes.
Flowering trees can provide seasonal beauty and a splash of color to your landscape. Yellow, red, pink, white, purple and blue are all popular and widely available colors for flowering trees and can help you maintain your chosen color palette.
Finally, fruit trees provide both color and a practical, fresh food source for your yard. Berries, apples, citrus fruits and nuts can all be grown organically. The range of colors seen in fruit trees rivals that of flowering trees, making it easy to combine them with one another for year-round color.
Fruit trees often have a long lifespan, with a single tree producing fruit for as long as 40 years. They are also available in three different sizes, depending on the needs of your landscape: dwarf, semi-dwarf and standard. Even a dwarf apple tree can produce hundreds of apples a season, so make sure you choose the right size for your uses, or you'll end up with an awful lot of stray fruit on the ground.
It's essential to remove damaged branches, thin the tree's foliage to promote healthier growth and shape the tree by performing regular tree trimming. It's best to break out the tree trimmers or pruning shears during fall or winter, whichever is your tree's dormant season. Flowering and fruit trees should be pruned about a month after their last bloom, so you don't trim off next year's bloom.