Planting a seed and watching it grow into a huge tree provides a sense of accomplishment. Trees enrich our atmosphere with oxygen, provide extra shade in summer months and have numerous other wonderful effects on our environment. When tree planting is done in a planned way, it can offer numerous rewarding experiences.
Factors to Consider Before Planting a Tree
Randomly planting trees can cause problems after they grow and increase in size. Benefits like beauty, privacy and windbreak can only be enjoyed when you know where to plant a tree. Here are certain aspects you can consider:
• The Purpose of Planting the Tree – By identifying the true purpose, you can choose a better tree. Planting trees can serve multiple functions like:
o Shade o Colour o Soundproofing o Cooling o Windbreaks o Wildlife habitat o Screening out eyesores at your property o Framing the view of a house or landscape o Dividing the landscape area o Creating privacy o Conserving energy You can have all these purposes in your mind or only few of them. Flower plants will add colour to your home and trees which spread out in comparison to columnar ones are better in blocking sights.
• Soil Conditions – Soil conditions vary depending on the geography and the climate of a place. Moist, deep, fertile and well-drained soils provide the ideal conditions for a healthy plant. If your surroundings are heavily populated or have numerous industries, the fertility, aeration, water-holding capacity and internal-drainage of the soil would have altered. If the soil is compacted, the pore space and the amount of oxygen are reduced, stressing the tree. First, understand the type of soil the plant will need before planting it or it may die. Some trees grow well in clay soils and others in sandy ones.
You can get a soil test done to determine its fertility. It will give you information about the available nutrients, soil pH and organic matter content. • Tree Location – Observe the space both above and below ground before planting a tree. When the tree matures, it will increase in height and roots will spread throughout the ground. This can pose certain problems in a congested residential or commercial area where:
o Roots can extend into the building foundations and cause cracks. Gradually, they may weaken the structure or even damage it. o You can find cracks in sidewalks, driveways, porches and patios. o Sewer lines or septic tanks may be clogged by roots. o You can find leaves in gutters and abrasion from tree limbs striking your building. o There are traffic signs, pedestrians or vehicles as they can get screened or obscured. o There can be blocked windows. o Trees may fall in storms, damaging electrical or utility lines.
Tree planting can offer cooler homes in summer months. You can enjoy the morning shade by planting trees in the southeast corner of your property. Similarly, planting them in the southwest corner will give you shade in the afternoon. Deciduous trees lose leaves in winter, allowing sun rays to pass through freely and warm your house. On the other hand, evergreen trees if planted in front of your house will block the breeze all the time. • Shape and Other Traits of the Tree – The shape of the tree and all its characteristic traits should suit your intended purpose. Its crown form can be round, oval or columnar and accordingly, you can plant them at the property boundary or along the driveway. The flowering, colours and textures can be matched to your landscape objectives. Some trees require intense sunlight while others need lesser amounts.
Certain plants can flourish in certain areas without much care. Some plants need more maintenance and may be susceptible to several insects and diseases. They will require fertilizers, pesticides or pruning at regular intervals. Flowers and fruit-bearing trees may attract certain wildlife or birds. By making an informed decision, you can avoid headaches and hazards in the long run. A right plant in the right place will enhance your property value by giving it colourful foliage, a graceful form and a cooling shade.