The Q&A Archives: What kind of tree can I plant?

Question: I want to plant a moderate to fast growing tree approximately 6 feet away from my house. I would love an evergreen, or any hardy tree that would like a sunny spot that grows fairly large, but whose root system would not be a threat to the house foundation. Do you haev any suggestions? I live in zone 7.


Answer: Generally speaking, even small trees will be far too large to be planted that close to your house, except perhaps for a Bradford pear. Trees send their roots out at least as wide if not wider than their branches, and they need ample room to grow and mature. Another possible exception might be one of the smaller cultivars of crab apple. They do need full sun to grow and bloom well. A medium or large shrub would probably be a better choice. The Hydrangea paniculata or PeeGee hydrangea can be maintained as a multistemmed shrub form or it can be trained like a small multi-trunked "tree". It can be pruned if required to direct its shape or control size, but should mature to a manageable size in that spot. Pruning of this type of hydrangea is done in early spring as it is a summer bloomer and blooms on new growth of the year. This hydrangea is very winter hardy and should do well in your zone; it does best in a sunny location or in half day sun. I hope this helps.

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