8 Shade Trees That Don’t Litter

There are very nice shade trees

Looking for shade trees that don’t do a mess? Then you are in luck: We are going to recommend eight species that you can grow without having to worry about their fruits or the resin that some of them secrete.. And not only that, but many of them have beautiful flowers or change color in the fall.

So if you want to know what they are, take a look discovering their main characteristics and how resistant they are to cold.


Explicative note

I think it is very important to clarify something first: all trees, and in fact all plants, drop leaves, flowers, fruits, branches to the ground. That is to say, there is not a single one that is not “dirty”. However, the trees that we show you in this article are those that, when their leaves, flowers and/or fruits fall to the ground, are not only difficult to stain, but also easy to remove with a broom and a dustpan.

Another thing to keep in mind is that an evergreen tree also loses its leaves. In fact, you can do it all year round. But at first glance, it doesn’t seem so, because he always renews them. For this reason, that which is deciduous (i.e. goes without leaves during the autumn-winter, or if the climate is dry tropical, shortly before the dry season) often “fouls” less than a persistent.

Selection of shade trees that do no damage (or not much)

Choosing a tree for the garden is not always easy. You need to consider how tall it will reach when fully grown, the width of its crown, whether it has overgrown roots or not, whether it produces showy flowers,… and also if it can live well in our climate and on the land that we have. Therefore, decisions should not be taken lightly, otherwise mistakes can be made.

So, to make your choice easier, here is our recommendation:

tree of love (Cercis siliquastrum)

Cercis siliquastrum is a leguminous tree

Image – Wikimedia/Zeynel Cebeci

The tree of love is a deciduous plant that reaches 6 meters in height. It has a crown about 3 meters wide, composed of rounded leaves. It is one of those that blooms earlier: at the beginning of spring or even a little earlier if the winter is mild. Its flowers grow in large numbers and they are pink. It can grow in a wide variety of soils, although it prefers those with good drainage. It resists down to -10ºC as long as it comes to occasional frosts.

black maple (Acer negundo)

Acer negundo is a deciduous tree

Image – Wikimedia/Sten Porse

The negundo maple is a deciduous tree that reaches 20 meters in height, and develops a crown about 4 or 5 meters wide. It has pinnate, green leaves, although they turn yellow in the fall. It grows faster than other maples, and it is also one of the hardiest: it resists frost down to -30°C. The only thing is that it should not be planted in calcareous soil, because it will not grow well.

Red horse chestnut (Aesculus x meatus)

The pink-flowered chestnut tree is a shade tree

Image – Wikimedia/Gmihail

The horse chestnut with red or pink flowers is considered a hybrid of Aesculus hippocastanum (the common horse chestnut) and Esculus pavia. It reaches a height of 26 meters, and its cup reaches 4 meters wide. Its leaves are compound and webbed, of a beautiful green color. It blooms in spring, producing pink or reddish flowers grouped in inflorescences 20 centimeters long. It grows in fertile, well-drained soils. Likewise, the climate must be temperate, with frosts in winter. It resists down to -18ºC.

Catalpa (catalpa oval)

The Catalpa ovata is a large tree

Image – Wikimedia/Peter coxhead

Catalpa flowers are white

Image – Wikimedia/Peter coxhead

Although there are several species of catalpa, we opted for C. ovata because it is much smaller than the others. It reaches a maximum height of 9 meters, and develops a crown up to 4 meters. The leaves are large, about 20 centimeters, and green. It produces very showy white flowers in spring. It is not demanding, but it is important that the climate has the four different seasons so that it can rest in winter. It resists down to -18ºC.

Dogwood (cornus koussa)

Dogwood is a deciduous tree

Image – Wikimedia/David J. Stang

The dogwood is a very attractive shade tree with few roots that grows up to 12 meters in height and It has a very dense and wide crown, up to 4 meters, composed of green leaves that fall in autumn-winter after turning red. Additionally, it produces white flowers in spring and edible pink or red berries in late summer or fall. Provides pleasant shade, but needs a temperate climate, high humidity and acidic soils. It resists down to -18ºC.

Magnolia (magnolia grandiflora)

The magnolia is always green

Image – flickr/vhines200

The magnolia or magnolia is an evergreen tree that reaches a height of 30 meters. It has a wide crown, 4-5 meters, and large leaves, which can be up to 30 centimeters long. It blooms in the spring, producing 12-inch-wide white flowers that smell really sweet. It needs fertile, slightly acidic soils, as well as a temperate climate. It resists down to -12ºC.

To manage (Mangifera indica)

Mango is a perennial fruit

Image – Wikimedia/Ji-Elle

The mango tree is an evergreen fruit tree that can reach 20 meters (in its habitat it even reaches 40m), which develops a wide crown, 4-5 meters. It has lanceolate, green leaves, up to 30 centimeters long. Its flowers are grouped in panicles, and the fruit is a drupe about 5-6 centimeters long and 4 centimeters wide with thin skin and yellow pulp, with a sweet taste. But for it to go well, the climate must be tropical or subtropical, and the land must be fertile.

Gabon tulip tree (Spathodea campanulata)

The Gabon tulip tree is a large tree

Image – Wikimedia/Forest and Kim Starr

The Gabon tulip tree is a fast-growing evergreen tree that reaches 20 meters in height. Its cup reaches 4 meters wide, and is composed of green leaves. Plus, it produces very striking red flowers throughout the spring. But it can live well only in tropical and subtropical climates, since it is not resistant to frost.

Which of these shade trees that don’t do much damage did you like the most?

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