When planning trees for new homes, there are many different factors to consider. Researching natural features, such as the soil type (is it acidic or alkaline and whether it is its composition is clay, sand, chalk or silt), full sun and shady areas of your garden is an important place to start. By identifying these natural features you can make informed decision on the plants that will thrive in your garden and the best positions to place them.
A well designed garden will pay considerable attention to balance and overall harmony. To achieve these, there needs to be variations in height, density, shape, scale and colour incorporated into the design. In addition to the planting, you need to plan areas of hard landscaping such as decking, patios, pathways and fencing. These will provide contrast to planted areas and can be used to add shape and definition in the garden.
By incorporating trees in your garden design, you can add architectural shape and height. Trees are good for providing privacy by screening a particular area, so you can have more secluded spaces for relaxing. In modern homes where a garden may by overlooked by neighbours, gaining privacy can be very welcome. Using trees for screening will also reduce noise pollution if your home is close to a main road or railway line. Trees can also provide shade in areas of full sun,they attract wildlife, reduce erosion, can provide year round colour, can add to self-sufficiency with fruits and nuts as well as adding maturity to a newly planted garden.
There are disadvantages to planting trees too. When planted close to buildings, they can cause damage; tree roots are big culprits in damage to the foundations of houses and surrounding pipework. They can absorb large quantities of water, which can make it difficult for other plants to compete and the shade they provide can limit the growth of other plants. If you select a deciduous tree you will spend considerable time clearing leaves from lawns and gutters in the autumn and for larger trees you are likely to need to services of a tree surgeon on occasions to keep the tree healthy and in shape.
As with any plant the correct choice of tree is important, as is the position in which it is planted. By spending time researching the fully grown size of the tree and its particular characteristics, you can find a species that is suitable for your garden and manageable in terms of on-going maintenance.
Once you have selected your species, you also need to properly prepare the area before you plant your trees. Trees can be purchased as bare roots (with no soil), container or root balled. A hole three times the size the diameter of the roots needs to be dug and the soil in the bottom and sides of the hole should be loosened with a fork and organic matter should be added. The tree roots should be soaked overnight to ensure the tree is well watered. When the tree has been planted in the hole, a stake should also be added to provide support. The stake shouldn’t be attached too tightly, as you need to allow for tree growth. There are different methods of staking a tree including angled stakes, guying and root anchors. Once staked you need to partially back fill the hole, and then tread down the soil before adding the next layer. Once planting is completed, the tree will need regular watering and a spring feed to keep it healthy and promote growth. For more information on what trees to plant in a new house, have a look at this.