Tips for Choosing Which Types of Trees to Plant In My Backyard

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    Kansas City is home to some of the most beautiful and vibrant yards and gardens in the state. As a leading landscaper in Kansas, High Prairie Outdoors makes it our business to follow the latest trends and provide our clients with insights on how to best manage your property. One thing we’ve noticed in the past few years is the popularity of trees around Kansas City homes.

    Planting trees is a great way to protect our local environment and build a beautiful aesthetic on your land. However, it is important to note that not all trees work on all property types and that trees require different care than your flowers and shrubs.

    Here, we have compiled some of our top tips for choosing trees and caring for them.

    Tree Selection

    There are so many types of trees available to Kansas City homeowners, but how do you know which ones will work on your land?

    • Purpose: Are you looking for a tree to brighten a space with beautiful Spring or Summer blooms, like a Lilac tree? Perhaps you want a tree to provide food for your garden party get-togethers, like plum or pecan. The purpose of a tree is an important factor in your planting choice.
    • Size: The size of the tree you select should be based on the size of your property. Paying close attention to the maximum height and width of the tree you are considering will save you from cutting it down later if it becomes too large for your outdoor space. Smaller properties should consider smaller tree species, while larger properties may choose large trees.
    • Aesthetic: Not all trees are made the same, which means not every tree will look as sharp against your chosen color and planting scheme. Be sure to look at examples of the tree you are considering to see how it might stand up next to the flora and fauna of your home garden.

    Visiting a local tree nursery will give you plenty of inspiration, and provide an opportunity to speak to a specialist on tree species.

    Where to Plant Your Trees

    Where to plant is just as important as what to plant because the roots of your tree will extend far out from your planting site. Like an iceberg, which conceals most of its mass beneath the surface of the water, there is far more to a tree than what you see above the soil. This matters because the roots of a large tree can easily cause other problems.

    We usually recommend that clients plant large trees far from the home, so that roots have space to extend without damaging anything. Similarly, smaller trees with smaller roots can be closer to the home.

    Native Kansas Tree Choices

    We often suggest to our clients that native Kansas trees make the best trees for planting as they are more adaptable to local conditions. In other words, you don’t want to spend a lot of money on an important tree that won’t thrive in your soil type or Kansas temperatures. Fortunately, we have many native plants to choose from, including:

    • Pecan
    • Silver Maple
    • Bur Oak
    • Black Walnut
    • American Sycamore
    • Persimmon
    • English Oak
    • Pawpaw
    • Hackberry

    Of course, there are many other trees that grow well in our climate. Chatting with your local landscaper will give you a better idea of which trees will make a good candidate for your property.

    Caring for Trees

    Caring for your trees is often much easier than caring for flowers and shrubs. Trees draw water up through massive roots under the soil, and therefore require less watering, if any, than flowers in your garden. As your tree is first planted, however, it will require more care than it will in later years. Fertilization, weeding around the plant site, and regular watering are a must.

    As the years go on, you may be required to prune your tree, remove dead branches and twigs, and monitor for insects or signs of illness.

    Contact High Prairie Outdoors

    Are you a resident of Kansas City looking to improve your yard or garden with the addition of trees? High Prairie Outdoors is happy to help you find the best trees for your soil and property type. Our team of experienced contractors and gardeners work on properties across the city on projects of all shapes and sizes.

    For more information on native trees, tree planting, and High Prairie Outdoors’s services, we invite you to call us at 1-816-398-2901.

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    About The Author

    Robyn is a 2009 Graduate of the Kansas State University Department of Horticulture. She grew up in South East Kansas where she graduated from Humboldt High School. She was a Kansas State University Leadership Scholar and President of the Horticulture Club. She married Bret in 2009 and they have a daughter Ellie, born in 2021. Their family is completed by three adopted dogs.

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