Patios are perfect outdoor spaces during the summer months if they are shaded with trees that require little maintenance.
A common problem is to have a great outdoor space but then be unable to use it because an oak tree is dropping acorns everywhere or there is sap dripping onto every surface.
The wrong choice of shade tree can lead to years of headaches and extra work.
The following list of trees is wonderful for outdoor spaces because they require very little maintenance, create shade, and do not make a big mess!
The best part is, if the trees ever need some extra care, you can always contact your local lawn care company for tree and shrub services!
The first tree on our list is a Red Maple, more specifically a Brandywine Red Maple because it is a cross between two other maple trees and does not produce fruit – the commonly known ‘helicopters’ or ‘whirlybirds’ which are a potential headache to clean up.
Brandywine Red Maples are known for their vibrant red foliage in the fall which provides a beautiful sight while sitting on the patio or driving past.
In addition, the Brandywine Red Maple is capable of adapting to a variety of different soils and conditions as well as growing at a medium to fast rate to heights over twenty-five feet tall and a canopy width stretching to about thirty feet.
A further bonus is that it is fairly pest-resistant and needs minimal pruning each year. The Brandywine Red Maple is the perfect shade tree for a patio if you want minimal hassle in every respect.
The Raywood Ash is not native to the United States but has been a popular landscaping tree since the 1980s when it became more commercially available.
It is an excellent choice as a shade tree because of its height of forty to fifty feet and its canopy width of about twenty-five feet when mature.
Deep green leaves turn to shades of a reddish-purple in the fall and, once established, the Raywood Ash is not only drought-resistant but also resistant to many predatory insects.
The Raywood Ash does well in most soils but does take pruning to get its best shape and prevent weakening the tree.
A further benefit is that the male trees do not produce fruit which means only the leaves will need to be taken care of in the fall.
The Japanese Zelkova is a wonderful shade tree that looks very similar to an American Elm, but is resistant to Dutch Elm Disease.
Japanese Zelkova are fast growers that can reach heights of eighty feet with a canopy width of fifty to seventy-five feet.
They grow best in more acidic, well-draining soil, but can also tolerate drier alkaline, or clay soils as well.
The Zelkova will need to be pruned to develop its shape and will need to be protected against ice as ice can cause serious damage to the tree and affect its future growth pattern.
In general, the trees do not make much of a mess although they will drop bark and leaves and some small fruit that will most likely be taken care of by birds and other animals.
The Flowering Dogwood is a popular landscaping tree because of its beautiful white, pink, or red flowers and its ability to attract a variety of wild animals and birds.
It reaches an average height of fifteen to thirty feet and a canopy width of fifteen to thirty feet, making its branches closer to the ground and by far the smallest tree on our list.
Flowering Dogwoods tolerate a variety of soils but are susceptible to dogwood anthracnose infections which are devastating dogwoods around the entire United States and fatal to the tree within two to three years.
The Flowering Dogwood is also vulnerable to pollution. Nevertheless, they are generally low maintenance and provide a wonderful backdrop of color for the patio which continues to make them a popular choice throughout the United States.
Fruitless Mulberry Tree
Fruitless Mulberry trees can grow up to sixty feet tall with a width of forty feet or more.
These trees tolerate most soils but grow best in soil that is loamy and well-drained. The young trees will need to be staked because they tend to be top-heavy.
The Fruitless Mulberry tree is a fast grower and resistant to pollution so it should thrive in a more urban landscape as well as a rural one.
Some pruning is required, especially if the lower branches are too close to the ground or diseased.
Also, it is capable of living through flooding and droughts, making it an excellent choice for a hardy shade tree with little mess.
Tree and Shrub Care
A patio is an outdoor space meant to be enjoyed throughout the spring and summer and even into the fall.
However, shade is necessary to fully enjoy the space which is why any of the five trees in this article are a great choice.
These trees not only provide shade but also do not create a mess that will need to be cleaned up.
Get in touch with the experts at Gecko Green to evaluate your lawn and see about getting the shade and hassle-free trees you want!