Tree planting

Choose a Tree

When selecting a tree to plant, consider:

  • Is there enough space for the tree to grow?
  • How much space is available for the tree when it reaches its mature height, width and depth?
  • Look at nearby buildings, trees, plants, sidewalks and roads that may not allow the tree to grow tall and wide as it matures.
  • Check for overhead and underground utilities.
  • How much sunlight is available for the new tree? Is the tree shade tolerant or shade intolerant? A tree that is shade tolerant doesn’t mind competition from other trees and buildings. A tree that is shade intolerant needs full sunlight to grow properly.
  • Do you want a fast growing or slowing growing tree? A fast-growing tree will fill a vacant spot more quickly. A slow-growing tree to replace an older tree when it matures and dies or becomes too big for the site.
  • Is there enough water available at the site for the new tree? Once established, native trees are considered more adaptable to Maryland’s climate conditions.
  • What is the purpose of the tree? Beauty, shade, wildlife habitat, increased property value, reducing erosion? Consider the color of the leaves in the spring and fall, flower shapes, and bark texture.
  • If you plan to use a coupon, is your tree on the eligible list?

Recommended Tree List for Marylanders Plant Trees

If you plan to use a Marylanders Plant Trees coupon please check if the tree you want to plant is on the eligible list below.

This list may be updated periodically as interest and availability of native tree stock changes.

SMALL TREES

  • CRABAPPLE SPP. (Malus spp.)
    Height: 15'-35', Spread: 10'-25'. Small flowering trees valued for wildlife food and shelter. Produces a small fruit the size of a marble. Can be used in many types of landscape settings as they tolerate urban conditions well.
  • DOGWOOD, ALTERNATE-LEAF/PAGODA (Cornus alternifolia)
    Height: 12’-15’, Spread: 10’-12’. Pagoda Dogwood is an excellent small tree or large shrub that can be grown either as a single or multi-trunked specimen. General crown form is oval to round but it has a unique horizontally layered branching structure which accounts for its common name. It has flat clusters of small white flowers in spring. Fruit are small blue-black berries that are readily eaten by birds. The fall foliage color is a deep burgundy. Does well in either full sun or shade. Does not tolerate hot dry sites.
  • DOGWOOD, AMERICAN FLOWERING (Cornus florida)
    Height: 20', Spread: 15'-20'. Small tree with flat topped crown. Place in well drained soil. Full sun to partial shade. Has character in all four seasons. Excellent as specimen tree or used on the corner of a house. Bright red berries are an important food source for songbirds including evening grosbeak, cardinals, robins and cedar waxwings.
  • FRINGETREE, WHITE (Chionanthus virginicus)
    Height: 12'-20', Spread: same. Slowing-growing tree that prefers moist, fertile soils and full sun. Excellent specimen tree or in groups, borders or near large buildings. Limited wildlife value.
  • HAWTHORN, WASHINGTON (Crataegus phaenopyrum)
    Height: 25'-30', Spread: 20'-25'. Broadly rounded to oval, dense, thorny tree. Plant in well drained soil in full sun. Excellent specimen tree or for borders and hedges. Tolerates severe urban stresses. Has attractive flowers, fruits, and foliage. Should not be used in high traffic areas. Dense thorns make excellent nesting sites for songbirds. Fruit is used by grouse.
  • HAWTHORN, GREEN (Crataegus viridis)
    Height 20’-35’ Spread: same. Rounded crown. Sharply thorny. Flowers are white and fall foliage a purple to scarlet color. The fruit is bright red and persistent into winter.
  • HOLLY, AMERICAN (Ilex opaca)
    Height: 15'-30', Spread: 18'-25'. Dense, pyramidal in youth, opening up with age. Plant in moist, well drained soil. Full sun or partial shade. Use one male for every three females. Use as specimen plant or in groupings. Many cultivars. Used extensively by many songbirds including thrushes, mockingbirds, catbirds, bluebirds and thrashers. Foliage provides cover for songbirds and mammals.
  • HOPHORNBEAM/IRONWOOD (Ostrya virginiana)
    Height: 30’-50’, Spread: 25’ Hophornbeam has a lovely yellow fall color, and the small nutlets, which ripen in summer and fall, are used by birds and mammals during the winter. Bark is an attractive orange or grayish brown peeling off in longitudinal strips.
  • MAGNOLIA, SWEETBAY (Magnolia virginiana)
    Multistemmed, small tree or open shrub. Likes wet, acid soils. Tolerates shade. Used as specimen tree. White to cream colored flowers that have a strong lemon and rose-scented smell. Wildlife value is low. Seeds are eaten by some mammals and birds. Foliage is used by several birds for nest building.
  • PAWPAW (Asimina triloba)
    A shrub or small tree that tolerates shade, pawpaw produces a fruit that is readily eaten by wildlife. Flowers open greenish-brown and become deep red.
  • REDBUD, EASTERN (Cercis canadensis)
    Height: 20'-30', Spread: 25'-30'. Small tree with rounded crown, pink to purplish flowers in early spring. Heart-shaped leaves are reddish at emergence, become dark green, then yellow in the fall. Likes moist, well drained soils. Full sun to light shade. Can be used as a street, yard, or border tree. Requires little pruning after lower branches have been removed for clearance. Limited wildlife value.
  • SERVICEBERRY or SHADBLOW (Amelanchier canadensis)
    Height: 6'-20', Spread: 10'-15'. Erect stems, often clumped. These small trees have attractive bark, flowers, and fruit. White flower. Beautiful orange to red autumn color. Requires little or no maintenance. Important berry producer during the early summer months. Blue-black fruit is eaten by bluebirds, cardinals, and tanagers. Foliage is used by browsers.
  • SERVICEBERRY, ALLEGHENY (Amelanchier laevis)
    Height: 30’-40’, Spread: 15’-20’. Multiple stems are upright and highly branched forming a dense shrub, or if properly pruned a small tree. The tree is short-lived, has a rapid growth rate, and can be used as a filler plant or to attract birds. The main ornamental feature is the white flowers borne in drooping clusters in mid spring. The purplish black berries are sweet and juicy but are soon eaten by birds. The fall color is yellow to red. It is well adapted for planting beneath power lines due to its small size.
  • SERVICEBERRY, DOWNY (Amelanchier arborea)
    Height 15’-25’ Spread: up to 35’ Typically multi-stemmed. A beautiful orange leaf in the fall. Flowers white and in upright clusters. Fruit is preferred by birds. Fruit is sweet and edible.

LARGE TREES

  • BALDCYPRESS, COMMON (Taxodium distichum)
    Height 50'-70', spread 20'-30'. This lofty, deciduous (loses its leaves in the fall) conifer (small round cones at the end of twigs) is very tolerant to typical urban conditions as well as wet areas. Its slender pyramidal form, beautiful leaf texture, attractive bark and fast growing habit make this a worthwhile tree to plant. Bright green spring leaves ½" - Ύ" turn soft sage green in summer, and pale orange in autumn before dropping. "Cypress knees" occur only in or near water.
  • BEECH, AMERICAN (Fagus grandifolia)
    Height: 50'-100', Spread: 50'-70'. Often has short trunk with wide spreading crown. Likes moist, well drained soils. Does best in full sun, but tolerates shade. Should be restricted to large area use for parks and estates. Beechnuts are eaten by birds and mammals and are important food for chipmunks and squirrels.
  • BIRCH, RIVER (Betula nigra)
    Height: 40'-70', Spread: 40'-60'. Pyramidal in youth and rounded with age. Often grown multistemmed. Best adapted to moist soils. Handsome tree used as specimen in parks and lawns. Catkins are used by redpolls and pine siskins. Foliage is used by browsers.
  • ELM, AMERICAN (Ulmus Americana)
    Height 60'-80', spread 50'-80'. This large, graceful, spreading, medium to fast growing tree can reach to a height of 80 feet. It is well suited to lawns and urban landscapes. It prefers deep, rich soils, but grows well in a variety of conditions and is pH and salt tolerant.
  • HACKBERRY (Celtis occidentalis)
    Height: 40'-60', Spread same. In youth weakly pyramidal; in old age the crown is a broad top of ascending, arching branches. Medium to fast growth. Prefers rich, moist soils, but grows in dry, heavy or sandy, rocky soils; withstands acid or alkaline conditions; moderately wet or very dry areas; tolerates wind; full sun; withstands dirt and grime of cities. Fruit is fleshy, orange to dark purple, ripening in September to October. Leaves are yellow to yellow-green in fall. Good tree for park or large area use. Useful tree for adverse growing conditions. Fruit is popular with winter birds, especially the cedar waxwing, mockingbird, and robin.
  • HEMLOCK, EASTERN (Tsuga canadensis)
    Height: 40'-70', Spread: 25'-35'. Pyramidal in youth, becoming more pendulous with age. Likes moist, well-drained soils. Plant in sheltered area. Tolerates shade. Relatively fast growing. Excellent for screens, hedges, accent plant and foundation plantings. Provides excellent cover for deer and songbirds. Nesting site for several warblers. Seeds are eaten by juncos, chickadees, and siskins.
  • HONEYLOCUST (Gleditsia triacanthos)
    height: 30'-70', Spread: same. Usually has short trunk with open, oval crown. Transplants readily. Fast grower. Withstands a wide range of conditions but prefers rich, moist soil. Excellent lawn tree under filtered shade. Tolerates salt, heat, drought, compaction, and other adverse urban conditions. Limited wildlife value.
  • LINDEN, AMERICAN (Tilia americana)
    Height: 50'-70', Spread: 35'-50'. A fine shade tree for streets, parking lots, and large lawns. Prefers moist, fertile soil but will tolerate drier sites, Transplants readily.
  • LOCUST, BLACK (Robinia pseudoacacia)
    Height: 50’-80’, Spread: 20’-35’ The upright growth and short, irregular branches form an open canopy and cast light shade below the tree, allowing a lawn to thrive. The leaves are some of the last to appear in spring and often drop early in the autumn. In late spring for a short time the trees have long, dense clusters of extremely fragrant, one-inch white blossoms which are literally "alive" with the bustling activity of visiting bees. The honey which is produced is quite delicious. The dark red to black, leathery seeds pods which follow will persist on the trees throughout the winter.
  • MAGNOLIA, SOUTHERN (Magnolia grandiflora)
    Height: 60’ – 80’., Spread: 30’ – 50’. Can be a very large, handsome, yard tree. Needs plenty of room to grow. Leaves are leathery and dark green above. Flowers are creamy white and have a pleasant fragrance. Seeds grow in a “cone” and are a beautiful red.
  • MAPLE, RED (Acer rubrum)
    Height: 40'-60', Spread: same. Medium to fast grower. Excellent tree as specimen for lawn and park settings. Excellent fall color. Good shade tree. Buds, flowers and leaves provide food for many birds and mammals. Chipmunks and squirrels eat seeds and some songbirds use stalks for nest building.
  • MAPLE, SUGAR (Acer saccharum)
    Height 60'-70', spread usually 2/3 the height. Leaf color is medium to dark green in summer changing to brilliant yellow, burnt orange and red tones in autumn. It grows best in well-drained moderately moist, fertile soil. It does not grow well in tight, compacted situations such as in very small lawns or other conditions that restrict root growth. It tolerates shade but does not tolerate air pollution and is susceptible to damage from road salt.
  • OAK, CHESTNUT (Quercus prinus)
    Chestnut oak commonly reaches 60 to 80 feet at maturity and grows better on dry and poor sites than other oaks. Acorn is a favorite food of deer, turkey and squirrels.
  • OAK, NORTHERN RED (Quercus rubra)
    Height: 60'-80', Spread: 45'-65'. Habit is round-topped and symmetrical. Full sun. Prefers loamy, well drained soils. Fast growing tree for lawns, parks and estates. Acorns are at the top of the food preference list for wood ducks, pheasants, grackles, jays, nuthatches, thrushes, woodpeckers, rabbits, foxes, squirrels and deer.
  • OAK, PIN (Quercus palustris)
    Height: 60'-70', Spread: 25'-40'. Strongly pyramidal with ascending branches. One of the faster growing oaks. Full sun. Tolerates wet soils but is adaptable to many soils types. Most widely used oak for landscaping. Used on lawns, parks, golf courses and around commercial buildings. Acorns are at the top of the food preference list for wood ducks, pheasants, grackles, jays, nuthatches, thrushes, woodpeckers, rabbits, foxes, squirrels and deer.
  • OAK, SWAMP WHITE (Quercus bicolor)
    Height: 60'-80', Spread: 50'-80'. Swamp white oak tolerates salt, drought and soil compaction in urban environments. It is transplanted more readily than most other white oaks. The acorns are eaten by a wide variety of wildlife.
  • OAK, WHITE (Quercus alba)
    Height: 80'-100', Spread; 50'-80'. Classic oak form with strong branches. Pyramidal in youth, becoming broad and rounded with wide spreading branches. Transplant as small tree. Prefers moist, well drained soils. Difficult to obtain from nurseries. Sometimes available as seedling. Worthwhile tree for large areas. Acorns are at the top of the food preference list for wood ducks, pheasants, grackles, jays, nuthatches, thrushes, woodpeckers, rabbits, foxes, squirrels and deer.
  • OAK, WILLOW (Quercus phellos)
    Height: 50'-100', Spread 30'-70'. Fast growing oak with willow-like foliage. Transplants more successfully than most oaks, and becomes established quickly. Good shade tree. Full sun or semi-shade. Easily grown in wet soils. Acorns are at the top of the food preference list for wood ducks, pheasants, grackles, jays, nuthatches, thrushes, woodpeckers, rabbits, foxes, squirrels and deer.
  • PERSIMMON (Diospyros virginiana)
    Height: 20'-60', Spread: 50'-80'. Produces fruit that is a valued wildlife food.
  • PINE, EASTERN WHITE (Pinus strobus)
    Height: 50'-80'+, Spread: 20'-40'. Pyramidal in youth, crown at maturity has several horizontal and ascending branches. Fast grower. Grows best on fertile, well-drained soils, but is very adaptable. A very handsome and ornamental specimen, valuable for lawns, parks, and estates. Provides valuable cover and nesting sites for songbirds and mammals. Needles are used as nesting material. Seeds are eaten by quail, chickadees, grosbeaks, nuthatches and woodpeckers.
  • PINE, LOBLOLLY (Pinus taeda)
    Height: 80'-100', Spread: 25'-35'. Usually has a tall straight trunk free of branches on lower portions of the tree. Often are used as shade trees and for wind and noise barriers.
  • PINE, VIRGINIA (Pinus virginiana)
    Height: 50'-80', Spread: 25'-35'. Grows in thick stands on dry and sterile soils. Often are used as shade trees and for wind and noise barriers.
  • POPLAR, TULIP (Liriodendron tulipifera)
    Height: 70'-120', Spread: 30'-50'. Long, straight trunk with a narrow canopy. Fast grower. Plant in full sun and a well drained loam. Use in large areas. Can be used where a very large tree is desired, such as a broad boulevard, wide tree lawns near tall buildings, or in parks. Moderate wildlife importance. The purple finch and cardinal are principal users.
  • REDCEDAR, EASTERN (Juniperus virginiana)
    Height: 40'-50', Spread: 8'-20'. Medium rate of growth. Tolerant of adverse conditions. Prefers deep, moist soils. Will tolerate shade only in youth. Handsome reddish brown bark. Produces small cones. Good ornamental that is also useful for windbreaks, shelter belts, hedges and topiary work. Twigs and foliage are eaten by browsers. Seeds are eaten most extensively by cedar waxwings. Evergreen foliage provides nesting and roosting cover for sparrows, robins, mockingbirds, juncos, and warblers.
  • SOURWOOD (Oxydendrom arboretum)
    Height 25’-30’ with pyramidal shape when young, drooping branches covered with fragrant white flowers resembling lily-of-the-valley in late spring. Also knows as sorrel tree and lily of the valley tree. Prefers moist, well-drained, acid soil in full sun to part shade, but is adaptable. Interesting bark, glossy green leaves turning vibrant red in fall. Wildlife value for honeybees and songbirds.
  • SWEETGUM, AMERICAN (Liquidambar styraciflua)
    Height: 60'-80', Spread: 2/3 height. Pyramidal in youth, rounded crown at maturity. Likes deep, moist, acid soils. Occurs naturally on bottomlands. Excellent for lawn or park area. Gumballs can be a problem in lawn settings. Goldfinches and purple finches eat winged seeds.
  • SYCAMORE (Platanus occidentalis)
    Height: 80'-130', Spread: 50'-80'. Sycamore is used for watershed protection since it can be planted on wet sites.
  • TUPELO or GUM, BLACK (Nyssa sylvatica)
    Height: 30'-70', Spread: 30'-45'. Pyramidal in youth and irregularly crowned at maturity. Prefers moist, well drained, acid soils. Full sun or semi-shade. Deep taproot. Spectacular fall colors make it a fine choice as a street tree in residential areas. Tolerates seacoast conditions. Fruit is relished by many songbirds. Users include wood ducks, robins, woodpeckers, thrashers, flickers, and mockingbirds.
  • WALNUT, BLACK (Juglans nigra)
    Height: 50'-75', Spread: same. Well formed trunk with oval crown. Prefers rich, moist soils. Difficult to transplant so should be started as a seedling. Roots produce toxins which are poisonous to many plants so do not plant near fruit trees or gardens. Nuts are eaten by woodpeckers, foxes, and squirrels.