The Q&A Archives: Evergreen Tree

Question: I would like an evergreen tree (but not a 'pine' type) that would grow fairly quickly to 30 feet and has non-invasive roots and doesn't spread very much. It's to screen a second story balcony for privacy.

Answer: Sounds like you're looking for a "patio" tree, one that's well-behaved and predictable. Acacia, Dodonaea viscosa, Loquat or Cornus would all fit your requirements. When you visit the nursery, ask about any bad habits of the tree you select. Sometimes fast growing trees are short-lived, or have brittle branches. There's no guarentee that even the most well-behaved tree will keep its roots to itself. Feeder roots explore the soil, looking for moisture and nutrients. If you supply the required amounts, the roots won't be as likely to invade nearby flower beds in search of water.

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