Replacing Trees - Knowledgebase Question

Plymouth, MI
Question by madzima
April 28, 2010
I have three big what I think are ornamental (they bloom but don't produce any fruit) crabapple trees on the south side of my house. They bloom beautifully and smell great this time of year but shortly after the blooms fall the leaves begin getting infected and as the spring and early summer progress they brown and fall in larger and larger numbers. By August/September the trees are practically bare. One of the trees has also grown over the house so I'm ready to replace them. The area is sunny most of the day and slopes gently away from the house. What kind of tree would be a good replacement? I'd like something that blooms in spring, is disease resistant and easy to maintain. I'd also prefer something that won't get too big or sprawling.

Answer from NGA
April 28, 2010


You can use a preventative fungicide such as Captan on your crabapples to keep them from developing the scab disease that defoliates them each summer, and you can prune back the overgrown crabapple so it's not encroaching on the house. If you'd rather not work with your crabapple trees, you'll want to be sure to remove the roots of the trees - otherwise they will sucker and sprout up in the most inopportune areas of your yard!

Some replacements to consider are ornamental plum (purple leaf plum has an upright growth habit), or eastern redbud tree, Shadblow or Siberian Pea Shrub.

Best wishes with your landscape!

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