February 2020


Jobs trees do:

  • Microclimate enhancement: Carbon dioxide absorption, shading, temperature reduction, water retention.
  • Visual Screening.
  • Seasonal beauty.
  • Habitat creation for animals, birds, insects, invertebrates.
  • Edible Food source.
  • Recreation: climbing, swinging.
  • Cultural or religious.

Once you have a clear picture of the services you want the tree to Provide/ perform. Make an investigation into the actual conditions the tree will be living in., and how it’s basic needs for light water, and nutrients will be met.

Determine the following about the Local microclimate:

  • Soil type & compaction
  • Access to light? Direct sunlight? Direct wind?
  • Exposure to salt ? From snow piling, road salt run off.
  • Space available for root expansion ?
  • Space available for water infiltration into soil.

Also consider how the tree might change over time.

When your tree is 20/50/100 years old:

  • How big will it be?
  • How much shade will it produce?
  • Will your tree disturb views, access etc as it matures?
  • Will you tree disturb your neighbours, both above and below the ground ?
  • Are there any underground or overhead services that will be badly affected by your tree?

Also consider maintenance:

How much time, energy and capacity do you have for seasonal maintenance?

  • Raking leaves in autumn?
  • Cleaning up flowers or fruit from sidewalks?
  • Annual pruning?

Look to the natural environment for guidance about which types of trees already grow happily around you.