Planting shade trees in your yard has many wonderful benefits. Underneath a large shade tree is the best location for a backyard barbeque or for kids to play outdoors. A shade tree will also keep your home cooler during warmer months of the year.
To get all of the benefits of shade trees, you need to plant the correct species of tree and care for them correctly.
SD Tree Trimming has recommendations for the best trees to plant for shade, and some expert advice on caring for your shade trees so they continue to grow healthy and strong.
Planting Trees for Shade
Any tree can technically provide shade, but there are some types of trees that are built for the best shade. These trees usually have a thick, wider canopy that extends out about as far as it does upward.
Below, we’ve provided some examples of shade trees depending on whether they would be best planted in your back or front yard.
Back Yard Shade Trees
Shade trees in the back yard are typically for your own benefit. Neighbors and passersby usually won’t see these trees , so they can be purely for your enjoyment.
Besides just shade, these trees can create year-round color as well as some extra privacy from neighbors.
Here are a few popular choices:
- Sugar maple or silver maple
- Weeping willow
- Weeping cherry
- Red oak
If you have enough space, a live oak is another great choice. Live oaks are considered the fastest growing shade trees, and they can get very big. A mature live oak can grow up to 80 feet tall and as much as 100 feet wide.
Many of these back yard shade tree suggestions get pretty large, so you definitely want to do a little research to determine if the tree is going to have enough space to reach maturity.
If there is not enough space, the tree’s root system can damage your fencing or even your home foundation. You will also have to prune the tree every year to keep it manageable. A tree that is too large for its location will most likely have to be cut down, which is an unfortunate and sometimes expensive situation.
Front Yard Shade Trees
In the front yard of your home, you are planting trees for your enjoyment as well, but these trees will be much more beneficial for adding value and curb appeal to your home than the back yard trees.
Buy shade trees for the front yard that are a little smaller so they don’t overshadow your home. These trees should pair with your landscaping in both color and size, while still creating lots of shade for front yard play and relaxation.
These are some of our favorites:
These trees are beautiful throughout the year, and they’ll showcase even more color during the fall.
Another good choice for your front or side yard is the ‘Green Giant’ Arborvitae. This tree looks like a hedge and can be planted in a row with others to create privacy and shade.
With these suggestions in mind, we recommend that you plant what you like. In truth, any type of tree can grow to become a “shade tree.” Assuming the trees you choose are suitable for the weather in South Dakota, they will provide your yard and home with some shade.
Benefits of Planting Shade Trees
The benefits of having shade n your yard are numerous — and there are a few that you likely don’t automatically think about.
Shade, Obviously – When temperatures get too hot, you won’t have to hide indoors if you have a comfortable, shady yard. Put a chair or hammock under your biggest shade tree and enjoy time outside as long as you like.
Climate Control – Trees can help control the temperature in your yard and inside your home. Not only do trees protect you from hot sun, but they can also make it feel 10-15 degrees cooler below their protective canopies. This results in less solar radiation on your home as well, which might result in more affordable energy costs!
Better Air Quality – Trees produce oxygen and filter out pollutants, so there is cleaner air around your house. Arbor Day Foundation research states that one mature tree absorbs around 48 pounds of CO2 out of the air.
Safety for Animals – If you’re into bird watching or think squirrels and chipmunks are cute, your trees can give them all they will need to build a shelter, find food and raise babies.
Fun – What child doesn’t want a backyard tire swing or tree house? If you have small children, shade trees can offer hours of fun and countless memories.
How to Care for Shade Trees
Caring for shade trees is simple as long as you’ve chosen the right species for the weather in South Dakota. Healthy trees are strong and hardy after a couple of years, requiring little attention or care.
Consult a certified arborist from SD Tree Trimming if you have any questions about how to care for your shade trees, or to help you select the perfect tree for your property.
After you have chosen the perfect shade tree(s) for your yard, follow this easy care guide until your shade tree is well established.
Planting Your Shade Tree
The south, west and east of your yard always get the most sun, so plant your trees on one of these areas of your yard. This is two-fold: 1) the trees will then provide the most amount of shade and 2) they will also receive the most amount of sun to grow healthy.
Pruning Your Shade Tree
Prune during the first year or two after planting the tree in order to shape it and help it form a strong structure. To be safe, and for the best results, call SD Tree Trimming for tree trimming in South Dakota. A certified arborist will arrive at your home and deliver professional care for the tree.
Watering Your Shade Tree
Watering a new tree is very important. This helps them form a deep root system and will give the tree more stability over the course of its lifetime.
Fertilizing Your Shade Tree
Homeowners should fertilize a shade tree just like you would any other tree in order to promote growth. Fertilizer is not a requirement, but it can assist in helping your tree to grow faster and blossom more leaves, which are the source of your shade.
We hope this blog post was helpful! Remember, when it is time to prune or trim a new shade tree, SD Tree Trimming can help! Call us and a certified arborist in South Dakota will visit your property, examine the tree and lay out the proper care plan for its long-term growth and health.