Trees are naturally beautiful and can transform a landscape. Some types flourish with little maintenance, while others require extra care to reach their optimal growth.
Taking care of high-maintenance trees can be both physically and emotionally draining. So, you have to pick the type of trees carefully to grow in your yard. The right trees and shrubs for your home should be attractive and easy to maintain. Read on and find out what trees to avoid.
What Are High Maintenance Trees?
High-maintenance trees are structurally weak, susceptible to pests and diseases, or intolerant of environmental stressors. Below tree species are stunning in full bloom but require too much care for the average homeowner.
1. Mulberry Trees
If you have a small yard, the white mulberry is the sort of tree you’d want to keep out. It has aggressive roots that shoot out through the yard, cracks pavements, and upends landscaping on its way. We are sure that’s not what you want in your yard.
Plus, the white mulberry is a messy tree. The male species also emit pollen that triggers nasty allergies. Birds love the fruit of the mulberry, a phenomenon that contributes to the mess. What’s worse is the mulberry creates a canopy shade that’s so thick that grass can’t grow underneath.
Sycamore is one of the tree species that’s guaranteed to mess your yard. Its big leaf and bark drop coupled with frequent-falling seedpods means the sycamore will litter your yard every year. Majestic as it seems, the sycamore will work against you and fill your gutters, driveway, and yard with piles of leaves. This tree attains enormous heights quickly grows, and has aggressive roots.
3. Eastern Cottonwood
Skip planting this high-maintenance tree unless you’re ready to deal with the mess and heartache that follows. Cottonwood has lots of fluffy, cotton-like seeds that stick to everything. This tree also has a shallow and aggressive root system, which makes it highly unstable.
That’s not to mention Eastern cottonwood has a weak wood structure. Add to these undesirable traits the fact that this tree isn’t hard enough to withstand elements. Any cottonwood you grow may come tumbling down sooner than you expect.
4. Norway Maple
One of the invasive species, the Norway Maple, is a deciduous tree that grows approximately 40-60 feet high. It has shallow roots and creates a vast shade that makes it difficult for grass and other plants to grow in their understory. Some homeowners plant this tree because it thrives in various kinds of soil and weather conditions. A mature tree creates a gorgeous shade of yellow in the fall.
While the Norway Maple is tolerant of different environments, it’s a prolific seed producer and can invade forests. Its roots also aggressively wind around the tree trunk, making it easier for the tree to topple over. This tree needs constant care. Leave it unattended, and the roots will eventually strangle the tree. If you want to avoid problems, don’t plant Norway maple trees in your yard. Plant flowers and other manageable shrubs.
5. Weeping Willow
Native to China, the weeping willow is a graceful tree that has long, slender branches. This tree grows throughout the Eastern US, thriving from Central Florida and Michigan to Missouri. However, beware of their eventual size. The weeping willow can spread for 18m, and their invasive roots seek out and clog pipes.
Willow care might increase as they host various insects. Borers and caterpillars love to feast on their leaves. In addition, their dangling limbs and stems aren’t also strong and may bend or break in stormy weather conditions. Weeping willows are also prone to fungal infections that leave them with unattractive spots. It’s best to leave willows in their natural habitat, near water bodies, and plant something else.
While cottonwood trees grow fast and create nice shades for homeowners, they’re more trouble than they’re worth. Cotton trees, like the Norway Maple, have shallow root systems. Their branches can break off during heavy snowfall and high winds.
Worse, these trees are vulnerable to pests and diseases and tend to drop fluff and leaves over your yard. Go for stronger and less messy trees than cottonwood.
Eucalyptus trees are heavy and fast-growing, meaning they can become unmanageable if left unpruned. They also produce heavy litter in the fall, shedding leaves, bark, and branches. If their top gets heavy, their resin-filled branches can break suddenly. Ensure you clean up their shred-like bark as they’re flammable.
8. Sweet Gum
Sweetgums are straight, single trunk trees that grow to a height of 60–75 feet. These trees have a pyramidal canopy that becomes rounded at maturity. While mature sweetgum trees require little direct care, they can add to your fall landscape maintenance work.
They usually drop lots of leaves that need raking and gumballs over some time. Because of the hazard they pose and the potential to take root, it’s advisable to keep them swept.
9 . Basswood
Tenth on our list of high maintenance trees is basswood, which usually gets infected with aphids that secrete sticky bits of samp. Anything object below the basswood trees, including lawn furniture and parked vehicles, easily gets covered with the hard-to-remove sap. If you have a car, you have to park it elsewhere and not right beneath the tree. This tree also grows large and demands space to develop properly.
10. Silver Maple
Another high-maintenance tree, the silver maple, has a root system that can easily tear up your yard in no time. Its infamous root system is known to clog water lines and break sidewalks. The tree’s branches also happen to be weak and can fall in a stormy season. In late spring, the silver maple drops all of its seeds. Each seedling has the potential to grow into a baby silver maple. If you want to keep your yard clean or the nearby sidewalk intact, the silver maple is certainly not the best choice for you.
Looking For Tree A Maintenance?
If you’d like to plant a tree that will last for several years without requiring extra work from you, talk to a local arborist at Ironwood Earthcare Tree Service.
We have many years of experience and can use our knowledge of the Denver Metro Area climate and soil to recommend the plants or trees that will thrive in your yard.
Call us at 303-366-3020 or contact us online to explore your options or get an expert opinion.