Our California Tree List includes many of the trees that have been successful in our own landscapes.
Trees are a thought to the future, but not always for as long as one might think. There are Acacias that have a
predictable lifespan of 10-15 years, more and then you are living on borrowed time. Coast Live Oaks, while they may
live for a hundred or more years do the majority of their growing in the first 30, treat them well in their youth.
Trees can do so much to change the physical comfort of the local environment. The temperature under a tree is often
several degrees lower due to the evaporation of the transpired water vapor that they release. Trees dictate the plantings
that we use by the amount of sun they block out, the space their roots take up, and the water they require, or don't. In
short, time should be taken for thought about what effect this tree will have on the garden before it is planted.
A great deal of consideration should take place before planting a tree. I have seen great trees planted too close to
structures, or each other, far too frequently. Too often this leads to their untimely demise. Trees that have invasive
roots are regularly used as street trees. Trees that drop copious amounts of debris are planted where they overhang
lawns, pools, and parking areas. And then there is the ever expanding shade issue. It is difficult to plan plantings
for the growth of a young tree knowing how rapidly this can change. In the first year there is no shade to speak of
but by year three or later there can be a lot. Plants that can tolerate, much less thrive, in both sun and shade are
a rare commodity.
So enjoy our California Tree List and plant a few of the beauties here. Your garden will thank you.
Our state tree is the California Coastal Redwood.