Four Ornamental Aspects To Consider When Choosing A Replacement Landscape Tree

Whether you're planning a tree removal or have recently had one, you'll need to consider carefully what tree or trees to plant as replacements. Your tree service expert can help you choose trees based on which types will do well in your area and fit well in your yard. Here are some of the ornamental aspects of a tree to consider when choosing one to replace a previous tree.

1. Leaf color and shape

While flowers can be beautiful, a tree that has colorful leaves (or needles) may provide much longer-lasting decoration. One option is to go for a blue spruce tree, but if you're looking for a deciduous tree, many types of trees come in varieties bred for purple or variegated leaves. You can get unusual, decorative-looking foliage in your yard all season long with one of these.

2. Tree crown shape and size

The size and shape of the tree at maturity isn't just important for siting purposes and to avoid conflicts with power lines. Differently sized and shaped tree crowns (the part of the tree with branches and leaves) can serve different decorative purposes in your landscape.

For instance, you could use a dwarf tree inside a landscape bed without crowding out other plants. And a tall, thin tree can be a very different statement in your landscape design than a wide, spreading oak.

3. Flower showiness and fragrance

Flowers may be the first thing that comes to mind when you think of an ornamental tree. And in some cases, flowering trees can be truly remarkable. First consider the showiness of flowers (which has to do with their size, color, and general attractiveness). For instance, their huge, pink, or white flowers make flowering dogwoods very popular.

In addition, you should keep in mind the fragrance of the tree's flowers. Some flowering trees, such as magnolias, can scent up the entire area with their perfume. And equally important is not choosing any trees that could create a bad smell, such as a Bradford pear. (Some compare the scent of Bradford pear flowers to the smell of rotting fish.)

4. Bark and branch colors and textures

Although it's less common than showy flowers, some trees do have bark that's an unusual color, such as the bright white of a paper birch tree, or the orangey-red bark of a Madrona tree.

Some trees also have interestingly textured bark, such as the shaggy bark that hangs off of shagbark hickory trees. And finally, some trees display interesting textures and shapes in their branches and twigs. For instance, a contorted filbert tree produces curly, wavy twigs, and branches that give it a totally unique look.

These aspects will help you compare different tree varieties based on how they'll look in your landscape. If you're still unsure which tree to choose, talk to a local tree service contractor about which varieties are likely to be low-maintenance and trouble-free.