As a homeowner in Utah, there may have been times when you’ve wanted to add some greenery to your landscape but weren’t sure which trees would give you the most reliable and speedy growth.
If that sounds like something you’d be interested in tackling, then look no further! Below we explore the fastest growing trees suited for the Utah climate and discuss how they can benefit your garden or yard. Whether you are planting a tree to create an oasis of shade, as a tribute, or for any other reason, our guide will help you make informed decisions about what greenery will provide lush results with minimal effort.
Our state is known for its rugged terrain, diverse landscapes, wide-open spaces, and is home to some of the fastest growing trees in the U.S. If you’re looking to add some shade and beauty to your yard, there are plenty of options well-suited to Utah’s environment.
Here are five of the fastest growing trees in Utah and a few tips on planting to help you get started:
- Hybrid Poplar (Populus deltoides x Populus nigra) trees can grow up to eight feet per year in the right conditions. This tree may reach a mature height of 40-50 feet and has a spread of 30-40 feet. Hybrid Poplar prefers well-drained soil and plenty of sunlight. Hybrid poplar are great options for creating a privacy screen. It’s important to note that this tree has brittle wood and can be susceptible to breakage in high winds or heavy snow.
- Hybrid Elms (Ulmus carpinifolia x pumila) can grow up to six feet per year. They are hardy, fast-growing trees that depending on cultivar can reach heights of 35 to 70 feet. Elms’ wide canopy of up to 100 feet creates a cool, shaded area in your yard and could reduce cooling costs. Several hybrid elm varieties are specifically bred for fast growth and improved disease resistance, such as the Accolade, Cathedral, and Homestead cultivars. Elms can be susceptible to pests and disease, so regular tree inspections are critical.
- Eastern Cottonwood (Populus deltoides) can grow up to six feet per year and reach a mature height of 80-100 feet with a spread of 50-70 feet. Eastern Cottonwood prefers well-drained soil and plenty of sunlight. Like other fast-growing Utah trees, Eastern Cottonwoods can be susceptible to breakage in high winds or heavy snow.
- Blue Spruce (Picea pungens): is a Utah-native tree whose striking blue-green needles and symmetrical shape provide evergreen color and beauty while its deep roots stabilize soil on slopes. It is relatively drought tolerant and well-adapted to Utah’s climate, especially at higher elevations. Blue Spruce also provides wildlife habitat and can help reduce noise and air pollution. While adaptable and beautiful, Blue Spruce is susceptible to pests and diseases so proper care is important to maintain its health and longevity.
- Honey Locust (Gleditsia triacanthos) is a fast-growing deciduous tree native to North America. It can grow up to two feet per year, reaching 30-50 feet in height with a canopy spread of 25 to 35 feet. In Utah, Honey Locust is commonly found in urban and suburban areas, as well as in parks and along roadsides. With its high drought tolerance and resistance to pests and disease, Honey Locust are a good choice for Utah’s arid climate.
Planting Tips for Fast-Growing Trees in Utah
When you’re ready to put them in the ground, trees should be planted in early spring or fall in a hole twice the size of the root ball. Water thoroughly after planting and keep the soil moist for the first year to encourage root growth.
The two most common tree planting mistakes are the wrong tree and the wrong place for it.
Make sure to choose a planting location suitable for the particular tree species you have selected. Proper spacing, sunlight exposure, and soil conditions are all critical factors to consider.
Regular pruning and pest control measures will also help keep your trees healthy and thriving. The certified tree professionals at Arbor+ are ready to help you take care of your trees and make the most of your landscape.
Benefits of Planting Fast-Growing Trees
Planting fast-growing trees in your yard or community has many benefits beyond just looking nice. These trees can quickly provide shade from the sun, which not only reduces the need for air conditioning in hot weather but also creates a pleasant environment to spend time in.
Fast-growing trees help absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, making them an excellent choice for those interested in reducing their carbon footprint. Planting trees is also a great way to help support wildlife in your area.
Planting fast-growing trees offers a perfect solution for any Utah gardener looking for quick shade and a lush environment. With proper tree care and maintenance, you can be sure these trees will continue to flourish! If you need help deciding which of the fastest growing trees may work best for your garden area, contact certified tree experts at Arbor+. We can assist in customizing a plan that works for you and your outdoor space.