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PostPosted: Sat May 24, 2003 12:22 pm 
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Location: red oak texas
I need some suggestions on some fast growing shade trees that will have some pretty fall color. Any help with this matter would be of great help.

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 02, 2003 7:09 am 
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#1 on the tree recommendation request list in virtually any forum where landscaping is discussed: Fast Growing Shade trees. Understandably so- the benefits of shade trees are clear, from property value increases to help in reducing cooling bills in the summer.

One thing to keep in mind is this- often your fastest growers are either short-lived or weak trees. Silver maples grow fast, get big, then drop a 400lb branch on your SUV one blustery spring moring. Same thing with CottonWoods and many others. That said, presuming you live somewhere near the metroplex, here are some good ones:

Burr Oak (yellow fall colour)
Shumard Red Oak (deep Red fall colour)
Texas Red Oak (deep to bright Red fall colour)
Texas Ash (Yellow-Gold-Red-Purple mix fall colour)
Shatung Maple (gold to red)

These are good strong trees that will thrive in the soils here. They are also among the fastest growers in their category.

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 Post subject: Texas Ash
PostPosted: Tue Jun 03, 2003 4:28 pm 
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Location: Waxahachie,TEXAS
Shepherd of the Trees,
Is there another name for Texas Ash? What are some of its characteristics? I have heard of other ash trees, but not a Texas Ash. I want to make sure I get the right tree!

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 04, 2003 6:42 am 
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Well, the botanical name is fraxinus texensis but other than that I've only ever seen Texas Ash attributed to it. It has Fall colour that tends to be more in the orange range but ash some reds and purples mixed in sometimes. Really good shade tree in that it's a fairly fast grower, very sturdy, and allows just enough light to get through its canopy to actually have a lawn under it. Most Ash trees have mostly yellow to yellow-orange.

Make absolutely it isn't Arizona Ash. Even in it's intended climate it's not a good tree. Anywhere in North Texas, it's the tree equivalent of a trainwreck. Along with the Silver Maple, Fruitless Mulberry, Siberian Elm and Cottonwood, the Arizona Ash is on my 'cut it down if you have one' list. The best use for it or the others in that list is mulch and/or compost. Maybe firewood.

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PostPosted: Sun Jun 29, 2003 12:16 pm 
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The Ent wrote:
(Snipped stuff)
Along with the Silver Maple, Fruitless Mulberry, Siberian Elm and Cottonwood, the Arizona Ash is on my 'cut it down if you have one' list. The best use for it or the others in that list is mulch and/or compost. Maybe firewood.


Just curious why the Cottonwood gets such a bad rap? I think they asthetically they are great looking trees, and they get quite large, too. And nice shade. Yeah, I know that the 'cotton' from them can make a mess, but is there anything other than that?

Thanks much,

John C.


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 01, 2003 7:02 am 
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The 'cotton' is all the gripe one needs.

I know a gardener that had to clean his air conditioner DAILY during several weeks of the year due to the junk falling off his neighbor's female cottonwood tree. Not to mention the mess that meant on the yard.

Sure, they do look pretty some times of the year, but the nuissance is too much for my taste.

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 Post subject: Followup on Cottonwood
PostPosted: Tue Jul 01, 2003 7:30 am 
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The Ent wrote:
The 'cotton' is all the gripe one needs.

I know a gardener that had to clean his air conditioner DAILY during several weeks of the year due to the junk falling off his neighbor's female cottonwood tree. Not to mention the mess that meant on the yard.

Sure, they do look pretty some times of the year, but the nuissance is too much for my taste.


Thanks Ent for your reply. I have one more- I promise thats all - question on this topic.

I don't want to beat this topic down into the ground- but from your comments above, I am assuming that a male cottonwood does not spread the cotton?

IF so, how old are the females before they start spreading the cotton, or are there any other ways to tell. My query at this point is, if a male tree is grown, will it have any negative side effects?

Thanks much,

John C.


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 01, 2003 12:30 pm 
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To my knowledge, a male cottonwood won't do it.

I've not noted how old the females are when they begin to crud up the works for blocks around.

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