Choosing the right tree for your yard

choosing the right tree

Tyler Kirckof
Special to The Courier

Your landscape is part of the value of your home, and the trees are the cornerstones of that investment. Do you want trees for shade, flowers, fall color, privacy, fruit, or to complement your garden’s theme? Answering this question when picking a tree out will ensure a good decision.

It is hard to visualize a large tree in an open space. Use a tablet or smart phone, take it outside, image search the trees you are interested in, and use the pictures as a visual aid. A measuring tape should be used to make sure the mature tree will fit in a specific area. Knowing the tree’s mature size and the fact that the roots roughly extend 5 feet past the farthest branches will help avoid any structural problems, like planting too close to foundations, septic system, underground lines or pipes. Always contact Arizona Blue Stake before digging,

All trees are going to have negative and positive characteristics. Taking a little time to research the trees you are interested in will help make it an easy choice. “The Sunset Western Gardens” book is something of a bible for us nursery folks. Stick with “.edu” and “.org” websites on internet searches, or just hit up your local nursery.

Here are examples of trees used in our area to help as a starting point.

  • Evergreen (screening): Spartan juniper, Wichita blue juniper, Rocky Mountain juniper, Arizona cypress
  • Evergreen (aesthetic): Pine, spruce, alligator juniper, Hollywood juniper
  • Big shade: Ash, Bloodgood sycamore, mulberry, box elder
  • Flowering trees (spring): Flowering pear, floweringpeach, flowering cherry, purple plum, crabapple
  • Flowering trees (summer): Purple robe locust, chitalpa, desert willow, catalpa
  • Fall color: Maple, flowering pear, redbud, crabapple, oak, raywood ash, Autumn Brilliance serviceberry
  • Fruit: Apple, plum, pear, cherry, peach, nectarine, apricot

Tyler Kirckof is an Arizona-certified nursery professional at Prescott Valley Nursery, 6195 Highway 69, Prescott Valley, Arizona, (928) 772-0878.