6) Some Trees Need Full Sunlight

sunlightSome trees, depending on the species, can suffer from too much shade. Simply put, many conifers and hardwood trees have to be in full sunlight most of the day to survive. These trees are what foresters and botanists call "shade intolerant". Trees that is can take shade are shade tolerant.

Tree species that cannot tolerate shade well are pine, many oaks, poplar, hickory, black cherry, cottonwood, willow and Douglas fir. Trees that can take shade are hemlock, spruce, most birch and elm, beech, basswood and dogwood.

This pine, planted under mimosa, black cherry and hackberry, will be continually stressed and eventually die (see photo). The loblolly will never be able to overcome these low lighting conditions near the canopy floor. 


7) Remember Your Tree's Space and Growth Requirements

spaceEvery tree has its own unique growth potential. How tall and wide a tree grows is not only determined by its health and the condition of the site, but the final size of a tree will also be determined by its genetic growth potential. Most good tree guides will give you height and spread information. You need to refer to that every time you plan to plant.

This photo shows a disaster in the making. The oak was planted in a row of Leyland cypress and is dominating the two cypress planted next to it. Unfortunately, Leyland cypress are fast growing and will not only outgrow the oak, they were planted too close to each other and will decline if not pruned radically.




8) Root Damage Via Compaction and Storage

damageA tree's root system is the most vital organ on a tree. When roots fail to work properly the tree will eventually decline and die. A few common mistakes made by tree owners is to build or pave over roots, excavate on and around the tree trunk, park or store equipment and/or toxic material over the root zone.

The attached photo is of a magnolia showing signs of stress due to trailer and building materials invading the root zone. Actually, in this case it is the neighbour of the tree owner doing the damage.



9) Tree and Property Incompatibility

incompatibilityPoor tree placement and the lack of a landscape plan can harm both your tree and the property it battles to live with. Always avoid planting trees that will outgrow the space provided. Damage to building foundations, water and utility lines and walkways are the usual cause of damage. In most cases, the tree has to be removed.

This Chinese tallow tree was planted as an afterthought between power and phone service locations. The tree has been mutilated and still puts home utility connections at risk.
Don't Use Trees for Utility Poles and Decoration



10) Don't Use Trees for Utility Poles and Decoration

utilityTrees can easily become convenient fence posts, light poles and ornament stands. Don't be tempted into using a standing tree for purposes of utility and decoration by attaching them with permanent invasive anchors.

This yard-of-the-month looks beautiful and you would never suspect damage being done to the trees. If you look real close at the middle tree, you will see a flag pole (not in use this day). To make matters worse, there are display lights anchored to the other trees as night display lights.