Sidewalk Trees - Knowledgebase Question

Staten Island, NY
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Question by maureemille
August 5, 1999
I would like to plant a tree in the front of our house (area gets sun from morning till about noon). I want something that wouldn't be too messy, would flower in spring and have nice autumn color. My Husband is worried that the tree roots would ruin our new concrete sidewalks. I've explained that not every tree would cause that problem. Can you offer any suggestions?


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Answer from NGA
August 5, 1999
Wherever you have flowers, you're likely to have messy fruit or berry drop later in the season. Exceptions are ornamental cherry and ornamental pear, and fruitless (male) Mulberry. In addition to the above you can also choose a slow-growing tree such as Amur Maple (fall color but no spring flowers), Amelanchier grandiflora 'Robin Hill', Cercis canadensis (Eastern Redbud), Cornus alternifolia (Pagoda Dogwood) or Crabapple.

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