I want to try to block my back deck from the sun in the late afternoon. Does anyone have any suggestions?
Maples (not Japanese), Sweet Gum (has sweet gum balls), and Yellow Poplar grow quickly. Linda
I don't have any suggestions but I do know from personal experience that the Sweet Gum balls will drive you crazy. Also don't plant Bradford pear as this tree grows so large and the leaves are very messy and roots pop up all over. Hope this helps.
Why don't you investigate the Red Maple? I had one installed five years ago, and it has grown remarkably fast. In fact, it might do even better for you, since you live in a cooler zone. "Southern Living" recommends it highly.
Yellow poplar is good (Liriodendron tulipifera); I would second that recommendation. Grows fast and does not have annoying fruits/nuts. Deciduous.
Here is a link that might be useful: Yellow Poplar
Look for one of the faster growing oaks, like Shumard Oak or Sawtooth Oak. They cast wonderful shade and don't droop in late summer like red maples often do when they don't access to a source of water.
Bradford pear also have very stinky blossoms.
Have you thought about a fast growing vine to fill in with shade while you wait on a slower growing tree? Some of the fast growing trees are also a pain for one reason or other.
Aileen is correct. I need trees also, but I am going to try some vines and use slower growing trees. Slow growing trees are junk trees that the wind will blow over on your house because they are all soft wood. Bradford Pears are pretty trees but usually sometimes before 10 years is up they will get blown over. Even if your house is not in the way of them, you still have the mess to clean up, not counting the loss of a tree.
I have a red maple that blocks the view from my neighbors deck and my own. It's wonderful. We call it the climbing tree because we've left the lower branches in place so the children can easily play in it. We see two to four feet of growth each year. The tree is about 20+ feet now. The uppermost leaves tend to flag in dry weather, so do I.
I am trying Paulonia. They supposedly have a good tap root. I got some from Carolina Pacific out of GA (I think). There is a discussion group at http://www.paulownia.org. In one year mine have grown about 15 feet. I would not believe it if I had not seen it with my own eyes. I can send pics if you are interested.
RE: sweet gum balls. There is a good thing about them:put them around your tomatoe plants and they will impale those nasty slugs. Completely organic! And they make good mulch around flowers.
I'd recommend a Red Maple- good shape and structure, fast growth, no junk results (as from Bradford Pear, a Silver Maple, or Weeping willow), and terrific Fall color. Do NOT just buy a Red Maple; get an October Glory or a Red Sunset.
Fast growing: Paulownia, maybe Catalpa, closely related, if you want flowers. They are great for what they are.
Paulownia is a "junk tree" with hollow stems. IDK about catalpa.
Sycamore / London Planetree is probably your best answer. They grow 100 ft in...... no time at all!
How about a Chinese/Drake Elm? That's what we planted.
Another good choice is willow oak if you have the space - they eventually get huge.
River Birch. It has a wonderful paper like bark and grows like crazy. I planted 4 trees 2 years ago. They were about 6 feet tall then and have more than doubled in size.
I like the birch too. I planted one two years ago that was (MAYBE - at best) 3ft tall. It is now about 15 - 18ft tall and just as wide.
i wonder how tall you need them to be and how much space you can allot them?
if the screen should be tall and wide, what about bald cypress?
if not so tall, perhaps you could use something like crape myrtle.
Yes, the hybrid tree crepe myrtles are great. Grow fast and are pretty in bloom and in the fall. You can trim them up as a muti-trunked tree or a single trunk. Get to be 40' tall. The Basham Pink was one of the earliest hybridized. It's a light lilacy pink. The Natches is a white. There's also a deep purple. think it's the Tuscarora? Not sure of the spelling.
Also, white oaks grow fast and have bright red leaves in fall. Will adapt to a variety of soils.
Crape myrtles for sure! Four years ago we planted a red sunset maple (for shade) and 2 large white Natchez crape myrtles. The maple was a fairly large tree, hoping for quick shade, but one of the Natchez has grown almost as tall, around 20 feet now, and provides the much needed shade we'll need to rest under, in the hot summer in SC! The maple has yet to offer as much shade! The larger of the 2 crape myrtles has two main trunks and I've been selectively pruning the lower growth off and removing cross branches from the center, and that I believe helps the tree to grow higher. Last year, both crepe myrtles have bloomed twice; a real bonus with the beautiful white flowers.
catalpas are fast growing & attractive.
try a (CHINESE PISTACHE), it's fast growing & good shade.
Someone mentioned the white oak family. I think you'll find the Burr Oak to be a good choice. It grows quickly, offers excellent shade and is long lived.
I'll have to agree with shumardi. CHINESE PISTACHE trees are fast growing, long lived, hard wooded, have great fall color, and is disease free. I have had great luck with these trees, and the one I planted this year doubled in size. 4 ft to 8 ft.
Bald Cypress and Chinese Pistache were the best ones mentioned so far. If you have enough room a combo of the broad deliquescent Chinese Pistache and the tall excurrent form of the Bald Cypress would be very interesting. Long lived and trouble free. Post a picture.
Wow, I just learned two new words! Thank you. According to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary (online version):
excurrent- having the axis prolonged to form an undivided main stem or trunk (as in conifers)
deliquescent- having repeated division into branches (elms are deliquescent trees)
No problem Patrick. We here in AL feel it our duty to enlighten our neighbors living in the dark shadows of Appalachia. LOL
Yes, we're all excurrently deliquescent here. Hehehe. :-)
My next door neighbor has a 3-story house that looks directly down onto our patio and I'd like to find a FAST growing screen tree. Not interested in conifers, and would greatly prefer an evergreen tree. I live in San Mateo, CA (zone 9), and the area where I'd plant the tree is a 2.5 foot wide strip that gets sun until about 1pm. Since it's so close to the neighbor's house, it would probably be best to have a somewhat narrow tree. Any and all suggestions are much appreciated!
I need to find some very good skinny cypress trees that will grow in my paritally shaded Georgia home. Anyone know a good variety and supplier?
Beth DG: By now you have probably planted trees to the south or west side of your deck. If not, then think! You want shade in the summer, but no pesty seed or fruit droppings (that leaves out sweetgum, catalpa, sycamore), and deciduous so you have warm sun in the winter. Fine leaved or needled trees like willow oak or bald cypress will have many "twiglets" that shade the deck, even in the winter. Deep roots so your tree doesn't compete with the lawn grass or flower beds for moisture and food (again this leaves out willow oak). Not attractive to insects and diseases (Japanese beetles love crepe myrtle, red maple, and elm). Almost every suggestion I've seen here so far is in one of the objectionable catagories. Look up the Katsuratree (Cercidiphylum japonicum). I think it would be the ideal choice.
These have been mentioned but wish to cast a vote:
Drake Elm, Tulip Poplar, Shumard Oak, and Red Maple.
We planted all of these within the past 2-3 years at a new home. The Drake Elm is doing best at growing and producing shade. Why not plant them all. Go for good sized ones, you'll get a jump ahead.
I can't say what tree you should plant, but I can compute the correct location that should be used, based on what town you are in, the time of day you will be out there, and the week the shade is most needed, say July 10. Let me know if I can help.
I live in Ohio zone 5. We need fast growing evergreens for privacy from the neighbors who built an addition to their home with huge picture windows, to borrow our landscape! It is on the north side of our home, no shade & very moist ground. We need the trees to grow at least 30 feet high. No pines, as they have such a narrow root system! We have had three pines blow over in two years, from strong winds.
Thats good to know about the sweet gum balls. I have often wondered if they would make a good mulch or not. Personally I love sweet gums for there beautiful yellow orange fall color. You may want to try a weeping willow, I am told these grow fast.
The best fast growing tree is the hybred poplar and very inexpensive
If you have room, stick with the "investment" oaks. Burr Oak and Shumard Red Oak are fast growing, yet high quality. For a smaller tree, the big crepe myrtles are nice, but they dribble insect secretions, and you may not want to sit under that. I have two huge 'Natchez' and one big 'Tuscarora' that I like very much, but I won't sit under them. Around here, two of the best small shade trees are Lacy Oak and Shantung Maple, but I don't know how they would do in your area.
I'll vote for american elm
yeah ole american elm (ulmus americana)
or bald cypress
Have you thought about calling the extention office? They can mail you info on trees that will be great for you particular area.
I have a deck on the west side of my house and it's in full sun by 1:00pm. It's been completely usless to us. We finnally decided to build an arbor and weave outdoor fabric over it untill the huge climbing rose covers it. The deck is at the bottom of a steep hill and the septic is in there somewhere too so there is no place for a nice shade tree.
I have planted some "fast growing" shade trees in other parts of the yard and they have been doing very well.
Red Maple, Catalpa(I've heard they can be messy? mine hasn't bloomed yet) Sycamore.
I read this entire thread hoping someone would mention Leyland Cypress. I planted 42 of these this year: 30 @ 5' apart to be pruned into a privacy hedge, and 12 @ 10' apart to be stately monarchs outlining my short driveway. What does everyone else know that I don't?
Steve2416, The rest of know of the blight that attacks Leyland cypress. Maybe you will be lucky. I guess they didn't mention that where you bought them.
Doggiedaddy, Thank you. No, I wasn't told and didn't know. Wish me luck because the deed can't be readily undone.
hey all! i live outside of orlando and lost over 300 years of oaks on my property during hurricane charley last week. we are anxious, as you can imagine, to regain the shade and stateliness of these trees and we were wondering what would grow quick, produce deep roots (although we don't get alot of hurricanes in o-town, this one was a doozie!), live a long time and not be too messy. oh, and if it could have money growing off of it, that would help tremendously! thanks!!!
Most of the fast growing trees present problems in a few years, such as weak wood, limbs breaking and falling, etc. As to the tulip populars, I wish I'd never planted those things on my property, but didn't know enough about them when I did. They have roots on top of the ground and suck up all the other moisture around so that everything planted nearby is starved to death!
Someone mentioned sawtooth oaks--they're a good, fast growing tree as are river birches. I have both and am really pleased with them. The Chinese Pistache is a SLOW grower; I have one planted and it hasn't grown much in the 3-5 years I've had it planted.
I love bald cypresses, BUT they send up "knees" all over the place. I have about 6 of them planted behind our catfish pond and now I'm dealing with knees coming up everywhere.
I have some giant yellow poplars growing in my back yard, which provide nice partial shade, since the leaves are so high. They're beautiful. However, I'm glad they're not next to the house, because every year they drop several huge limbs from way up there.
Many species of palms withstand hurricanes better than any other forms of trees, especially palmettos (cabbage). Look for trees that don't grow too tall either.
Sweet Gum also comes in a non-fruiting tree. The leaves are a little thicker than the regular fruiting one. I have not seen the fall color as of yet but the green is great. They have no balls. Nursery man says it has more yellow color in the fall than the fruiting one also. I have really thought about one of them.
I'd like to plug the chinese fringe tree, Chionanthus retusus, a relative of our native Chionanthus virginicus (virginica? I never can remember!) It's pretty fast growing the first few years--mine was literally stopping traffic less than ten years from a one-gallen pot--and it's continued to grow but more slowly 'til it's a little taller than our one-story ranch house. It's shaped rather like a live oak and I think would handle hurricanes well--lost only a few twigs in Hurricane Lili a couple years ago, which up-rooted a small native crabapple nearby and took the top out of a spruce pine. It is a fat white cloud of fragrant flowers in spring (that's what stops the traffic) and has small blue berries the birds love in fall. They would be messy in a well manicured yard maybe, but mine isn't. I don't know why it isn't more widely planted, because it's beautiful all year with nice bark, a beautiful branching pattern, and absolutely no problems at least for me. Some of my friends who have gotten seedlings from me report it is re-blooming for them this fall. I think that happens mostly with young trees.
hey jeff w! we have a royal palm on the side of the house that lost most of the oaks! we lost 2 more with francis and 2 more with jeanne. our yard and landscaping have been devastated! it really is sad, but the royal palm is still standing as well as some other palms that i don't know the name of. i wonder why they stood so well and the oaks toppled? our problem is that the trees we had were shade trees on the west side of our house and now the sun beats in all the windows.
The new Dutch elm disease-resistant American elms (c.v. Valley Forge) grow INCREDIBLY FAST, especially if you provide constant even water throughout the summer and supplemental liquid fertilizer (e.g. Miracle Grow or other high nitrogen fertilizer)
I've never considered bald cypress to be a shade tree. If that's what you like and want to avoid the knees, plant a Dawn Redwood instead. Looks almost the same, but has no knees.
My selections would include Winged Elm (Ulmus alata), and Two-winged Silverbell (Halesia diptera).
A few years on this thread...
Bald cypress is a good shade tree (light, soft shade, not dense like a maple) You will not have probem knees unless the soil is quite wet. In dry areas the roots are deep. Pond cypress is even better for most yards - not so big and less "rooty".
Halesia and Chionanthus are very pretty.
Hard to go wrong with most oaks.
How about the Freeman maple- a cross between the fast but fragile silver maple and the showy red maple? Grows quite quickly, and is sturdier than the silver. Good fall color, too. I think 'Autumn Blaze' is the name of one variety.
The Mimosa tree has provided a lot of shade in a short time for our yard. Hummingbirds & butterflies love them. Once you get 1 the whole neighborhood will have plenty of sprouts.
We are cutting down all the sweet gum trees.......argh!!
You can't go far wrong with Thuja Green Giant arborvitae as they grow 3-5 feet a year and provide lots of shade in a very short time. Try the Botany Store www.botanystore.com for some good deals.
I notice all the fast growing shade trees (or most) that others have suggested are deciduous. We're looking for a fast growing evergreen tree with somewhat of a canopy to replace this awful Pittusporum on our front lawn because of the sticky droppings. Have about 40' of space in front of a one story house. Any suggestions?
leighc - you could try the Live Oak, Cedar Elm, Chinese Pistache (Pistachio)
Hi, We need suggestions for fast-growing shade trees with an emphasis on hardiness. This tree will be in an urban landscape (Washington, DC) about 15-20 ft max from our house, eventually overhanging the neighbor's yard. We need shade, would like it to be faster growing, but don't want wimpy trees that will split or fall over in our tropical thunderstorms or winter ice storms. Suggestions I've received for fast growing include Naches Crepe Myrtle, Weeping Linden, River Birch, Sawtooth Oak, Red Maple. Can anyone speak to the strength of those trees, or to their appropriateness for zone 7, likely to be even hotter and drier over the coming years? ; ( If you have another suggestion appropriate for our zone, that would be appreciated too, with comments about its strength and speed doubly welcome.
You will see, if you read this entire thread, that there is no such thing as the PERFECT TREE (or plant either, for that matter). All have good points and bad. You need to do adequate research and then decide what you want and what you can live with. Of your list, I can speak to three from personal experience.
A Natchez Crape Myrtle would be a nearly ideal size for your home and the amount of space that you have to give it. They, of course, bloom (white) in the summer, have nice fall color, and if pruned and trained properly are at their glorious best in their sculptural leaf-bare selves in the winter. Their bark looks like a giraffe's skin before it peels, and the trunks, as they get larger take on the look of human muscle. Your own organic sculpture. They grow fast (a five gallon plant can easily reach 15 or more feet in three years) and are very drought tolerant once established.
On the down side, they require consistent pruning, especially in the first few years, but this is not extremely time consuming. Simply choose three or four (or whatever) trunks that you like and keep limbing them up until the lowest limbs are above your head level. Remove other trunks and suckers that inevitably come up around the base of the tree. If the higher limbs fail to branch at a good height, cut them off ONCE and then remove all but two or three branches that form at the cuts the following year. Do not EVER just amputate limbs, or worse, trunks, because someone tells you the tree will bloom better unless you just like the look of a tree that looks like an upside down witch's broom. Give it some fertilizer to make it bloom, and congratulate yourself all winter on the beautiful structure of your un-maimed tree. (Sorry. I just can't help myself. Crape murder is a personal pet peeve of mine.)
Anyway, the other downside of Crape myrtles is the blooms can damage the paint on cars parked below them. On very hot days, the blooms just seem to become one with the paint. (Position the tree away from the driveway. End of problem.) And, they create a fair amount of bloom litter over concrete. Careful positioning can solve this, or just be willing to sweep.
River Birches are beautiful, multi-season trees. Their peeling bark is a big plus, and the grace of the trees swaying in the breeze is one big reason they are so popular. They are fast growing, and in this case, they tend to be brittle because of it. Expect alot of limb drop in high winds or ice storms. Although most people think of them as small trees, at least some of them can surprise you and get to be quite large. Be sure you know what you are buying. Also, in very moist soil, they can become invasive.
I have planted several Red Maples over the years and have a very hard time getting them to establish. This may be because of my incredibly tight clay. I don't know. Check around with folks in your area before plunking down your hard earned money. Most maples are notorious for having very...
Please don't plant sawtooth oaks, they are native to Asia and are beginning to spread beyond their intended locations. There are a ton of native oaks that are just as good or better.
Northern Red Oak
Southern Red Oak
Hopefully, by now (in the last 7 years), the original poster's deck is in total shade but for others finding this while searching for the same info, I'll put in my 2 cents. The only factor specified was "fast growing" so based on that alone I'd say:
Willow (particularly the Australian hybrid variety)
My house is in full sun. I am needing some fast growing shade trees for the front of my house, where the sun comes up at. Any ideas of any and also the price range for them?
Hardwood trees generally do not grow fast - they are slower growing than soft wood trees.
Weeping willow are very fast growers - up to 10 feet per year but they need lots of water. Certain pine trees grow fast as well.
Prices vary as to region and where you buy your trees. In our area (Central Northern KY), trees can cost anywhere from $100 to $1000, depending on size and type. Generally you are going to pay about $300 or more for a decent sized tree.
We planted a very small weeping willow a little over 2 years ago and it has more than doubled in height and girth. They are subject to ice damage though as are pine trees (soft wood).
Even though our willow was small, the root ball weighed over 250 pounds - so we had to have the nursery people plant it.
Generally speaking, faster growing softer wood trees are going to be less strong structurally than slower growing hard wood trees.
So we have a huge fruitless mulberry that we have love right in the middle of our (not enormous) backyard. It provides shade over the eating area in the hot summers and leaves us in sun in the winter but it's developed an incurable root fungus that (we think) is destabilizing its roots so we're pretty sure we're going to have to take it down. Part of the reason we bought our house is this tree.
1) What should we replace it with? Since we have to start over, I don't want to be close-minded. Keep in mind we have very limited water (really about 6 weeks of it in the winter) We need shade and prefer deciduous trees for the winter light it allows. No one's written anything about Empress Trees. Pros/cons? Other ideas?
2) And we've been having a hard time getting a definitive diagnosis on the fungus but preliminarily it appears to be some kind of conk. What, if anything, do we need to do to make sure any tree we plant won't be infected with any fungus that remains in the soil? The arborist we consulted said we shouldn't have to worry, that the tree we have was most likely injured which allowed the fungus to infect it but it still concerns me... Any thoughts?
When most of us think of shade, we think trees. However, there are many tall shrubs that are fast growing and effective shade providers without some of the inherent issues related to trees in backyard environments, such as invasive roots and potential damage from wind and storms. Because I'm a bird lover, I'm attracted to plants that provide shelter and food for birds. Among plants in this category is the elderberry (Sambucus), which can reach 20-ft or more in height and spread, but can be trained to grow more vertically like a tree, particularly the Sambucus nigra, when branches are regularly pruned off along the trunk. Pruned rods provide additional carbon for the compost bin.
Here is a link that might be useful:
From NE/zone 6b, but I'd consider a locust and surprised no one mentioned them. full sun. Grows to 30' to 70', 50' spread. (zones 3-9)
We have about 7 of them. Fast-growing, very strong, and small leaves (less than 1" x 1/2") let dappled shade get through. Small leaves degrade quickly and work well for sidewalks. In our area they are used commercially in parking lots - lowes, target, etc.
Grass grows underneath. Reliable yellow fall foliage. Pollution, salt and drought tolerant. Adapts to a wide range of soils.
-Shademaster (my personal fav). Green summar foliage
-Sunburst/starburst? (a yellow-appearing foliagein the summer)
-Black locust - ?may have thorns
-Avoid thorned varieties
-Extremely angular branch pattern has rugged less formal appearance