Spring Tree Planting Ideas

  Today is the first day of spring, and with the soil finally thawing out, many people start to think about spring plantings.  Spring is an ideal time for planting as our nursery supplier’s bring in fresh plants from the fields.  Moisture is usually abundant, and temperatures are ideal for root growth.  For the next two weekends Hoppe Tree Service is at the 86th annual Realtor’s Home and Garden Show at State Fair Park.  We are often asked questions about what type of trees to plant.  Questions are as varied as the people that ask them, but some of the more poplar requests are for trees that stay rather small, have good color, and don’t drop a lot of seeds or fruit.


Below is a list of some of our favorite smaller sized ornamental trees:

Japanese maple- small sized tree/shrub with average max height of 15-20’.  Red delicate foliage throughout the year.  Good drought tolerance.

Serviceberry- small sized tree/shrub with max height of 15-20’.  White flowering in early spring.  Small berries, smooth bark.  Good cold hardiness, and tolerates partial shade rather well.

Sargent Cherry: hardy plant, oval to vase shaped form 25-30’ tall, resistant to black knot fungus.

Red bud- small tree max height of 20’.  Gorgeous pinkish flowering in early spring.  Large heart shaped leaf.  Tolerates partial shade.

Tree lilac- max height of 20’.  Cream colored flower clusters in June.  Upright growth habit, and likes full sun.  This tree is tough and can tolerate urban stresses such as poor soil, and drought.


Here is a list of a few larger trees that can provide shade:


‘Sienna’ freeman maple: pyramidal form, 50’ tall 35’ wide, rusty orange to burgundy fall color, male seedless, wider branch angles, from northern seed source, less susceptible to frost cracks.

‘DTR 102 (Autumn Fantasy) freeman maple: broadly oval form, upright branches, 50’ tall 40’ wide, bright to dark red fall color, female species that produces seeds.

‘Morton’ (State Street) Miyabe maple: 40’ tall, 25’ wide, upright oval form, dark green foliage, late fall color, corky looking bark, faster grower, very adaptable to soils and pH levels, no pests.

Common hackberry ‘Chicagoland’: broad pyramidal form, with upright branches, 55’ tall 40’ wide, unique bark, forms a strong central leader, yellow fall color.

Ginko ‘Autumn Gold’: 45’ tall 35’ wide, golden yellow fall color, male species with no fruit. Good uniform branching.

Chinkapin oak: native to WI, wide-spreading, rounded open form. 40-60’ tall, 50-60’ wide, yellow- orangish fall color, adaptable to most soils, and pH. Drought and urban tolerant.

American elm (resistant to Dutch Elm disease)‘Princeton’: large leathery leaves, classic vase shaped form, resistant to elm leaf beetle and most importantly Dutch elm disease. 

Thornless cockspur hawthorn: 20-30’ tall 20-35’ wide, adaptable to most soils and pH. White flowers in late spring, deep red fruit in early to mid fall. 

Pear tree ‘Autumn blaze’: rounded form 30’ tall 25’ wide bright red to purplish fall color, stronger structure than other types of pears.

Hoppe Tree Service performs planting services.  We obtain our trees from local wholesale nurseries.  Contact us if you have questions regarding site selection or tree species. We will be happy to provide you an estimate for tree planting. 414-257-2111 or info@hoppetreeservice.com

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