Having shade trees in your yard has many wonderful benefits. Underneath a big shade tree is the perfect place for a backyard barbeque or for kids to spend time outdoors. It will also keep your home cooler during warmer months of the year.
To get the full benefit of shade trees, you have to plant the correct species and care for them properly.
ID Tree Trimming has recommendations for the best trees to plant for shade, as well as some expert advice on taking care of your shade trees so they grow healthy and strong.
Planting Trees for Shade
All trees can provide shade, but there are some types of trees that are built for the best shade. These types of trees usually have a thick, wide canopy that reaches out nearly 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. Next-door neighbors and passersby usually won’t be able to see these trees , so they can be purely for shade and enjoyment.
Besides just shade, these trees can create year-round color as well as some extra privacy.
Here are a few popular options:
- Sugar maple or silver maple
- Weeping willow
- Weeping cherry
- Red oak
If you have a large enough space, a live oak is a fantastic choice. Live oaks are said to be the fastest growing shade trees, and are able to get very large. A mature live oak can reach up to 80 feet tall and as much as 100 feet wide.
A lot of these back yard shade tree recommendations get pretty large, so you definitely want to do your research to determine if the tree will have enough space to reach maturity.
If there is not enough space, its root system can destroy your fencing or even your home. You will also have to prune the tree every year to keep it from being overgrown. A tree that grows too big for its yard will most likely have to be removed, which is an unfortunate and sometimes costly situation.
Front Yard Shade Trees
In the front yard of your home, you are planting trees for your enjoyment as well, but they will be much more beneficial for adding value and curb appeal to your home since they can be seen.
Choose shade trees for the front yard that are somewhat smaller so they don’t overshadow your home and landscaping. These trees should complement your landscaping in color and size, while still offering lots of shade for front yard relaxation and play.
These are some of our favorites:
These trees are colorful throughout the year, and they’ll display even more color in the fall months.
Another excellent option for your front or side yard is the ‘Green Giant’ Arborvitae. This hedge-like tree can be planted in a row to create privacy as well as shade.
With these suggestions in mind, we recommend that you plant what you like. In reality, any type of tree can be a “shade tree.” As long as the trees you choose are suitable for the climate in Idaho, they will provide your yard and home with shade.
Benefits of Planting Shade Trees
The benefits of having shade on your property are numerous — there are some that you probably wouldn’t automatically think about.
Shade, Obviously – When temperatures soar, you won’t need to hide indoors if you have a nice, shady yard. Place a chair or hammock under your best shade tree and enjoy time outside as long as you want.
Climate Control – Trees can help regulate the temperature in your yard and inside your home. Not only will trees protect you from the hot sun, but they can also make it feel 10-15 degrees cooler below their protective canopies. This leads to less solar radiation on your roof and siding as well, which should also result in lower energy costs!
Better Air Quality – Trees produce oxygen and expel pollutants from the air, so there is cleaner air surrounding your home. Arbor Day Foundation research states that one mature tree absorbs around 48 pounds of CO2 out of the air.
Shelter for Animals – If you enjoy bird watching or think squirrels and chipmunks are adorable, your shade trees can give them all they will need to build a habitat, find nearby food and raise babies.
Fun – What kid doesn’t love 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
Maintaining shade trees is pretty easy as long as you’ve planted the right species for the climate in Idaho. Trees are strong and durable after a couple of years, needing little attention or maintenance.
Consult a local arborist from ID Tree Trimming if you have any questions about the care of your trees, or even to help you determine the best tree for your property.
As soon as you have determined the best shade tree(s) for your yard, follow this simple care guide until your shade tree is well established.
Planting Your Shade Tree
The south, west and east of your yard get the most sun, so plant your trees on one of these areas of your yard. This is two-fold: 1) the trees will create the most amount of shade and 2) they will also receive the most amount of sun for healthy growth.
Pruning Your Shade Tree
Trim during the first year or two after planting the tree to help to shape it and help it form a strong foundation. To be safe, and for the best results, call ID Tree Trimming for tree trimming in Idaho. 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 will help them develop a deep and strong root system and will give the tree more stability in the long run.
Fertilizing Your Shade Tree
Homeowners should fertilize a shade tree just like you would any other type of tree in order to aid growth. Fertilizer is not a requirement, but it can assist in helping your tree to grow faster and produce more leaves, which are the source of your shade.
We hope this information was helpful! Remember, when it is time to prune or trim a new shade tree, ID Tree Trimming can help! Call and a certified arborist in Idaho will visit your home, examine the tree and determine the proper maintenance plan for its long-term health and growth.