What's the Most Valuable Asset in Your Landscape?

No, it’s not your pizza oven! Here are a few hints:

  • It takes years to mature and can be difficult and expensive to replace
  • It captures stormwater runoff and protects water quality
  • It filters the air of pollution while producing oxygen
  • It increases property values
  • It can improve social interaction by lowering crime rates, creating privacy, providing a sound barrier, and adding beauty
  • It can cool a surface 20 to 45 degrees! 

The Answer is a tree! Don't believe it? Find a large tree in a planter next to an asphalt parking lot on a hot summer day. Stand on the sunlit asphalt. Now stand under the tree. Think of how this can be cooling your house.

When planting a young tree, remove any stakes. If it stands on its own, it does not need to be staked. If it needs some help standing up, provide two to three stakes for one year. You want the tree to be allowed to move and bend as it is growing (like a fishing pole). Therefore, place the stakes just outside the planting hole and use a flexible material to attach the tree trunk to the stakes. Otherwise, it will grow up stiff and snap in a hard wind.


Mature trees don’t need frequent or routine pruning. Prune them only to remove dead or pest-infested branches, branches that interfere with people or block important views, or branches that have poor structure. If you need a tree trimmer, please be sure to hire one who is certified by the International Society of Arboriculture. Find a pro at www.treesaregood.com.

Image © Pam Pavela

Image © Pam Pavela