Also, I should add that my front yard faces south, it is open to wind and sun since nothing nearby shades it.

Asked September 6, 2014, 11:10 AM EDT

I am looking for one specimen/shade tree for my small(but not tiny) front yard. I'd like it to shade my house but not grow so tall so that it would be a danger to my house. I think 20'-30'would be ideal. The front of my house is taupe & almost plum colored brick. Someone suggested several possiblities for me and I went off to a nursery. I decided on Syringa reticulata '? Snow' cultivar. The salesperson said that they only carry plants that are suitable for our area. However,after coming home, I looked it up and read that in Zone 7 & higher that the "leaves emerge early & often desiccate or become necrotic by mid to late summer, not a good doer in the heat of a southern summer. " My question to you is that do you know of any planted in our area and how are they doing? They are scheduled to plant this /Saturday. I know that you are busy, but if you could respond fairly soon, I would appreciate it greatly.

Frederick County Maryland

3 Responses

Syringa reticulata, Japanese tree lilac is hardy from Zone 3-7. Although not your typical shade tree, they are planted in locations in MD and are dong well.

would you recommend that I choose a different tree for shade?

We are not recommending that you choose a different tree. Trees in the height range above are usually slower growing and do not provide much shade. Also, you did not mention the site - sun or shade. You will have to decide.

If you want other options for full sun locations consider kousa dogwood, crape myrtles (select disease resistant varieties), Parrotia persica, Persian parrotia, and smaller growing magnolia species.
Part shade - consider Chionanthus virginicus, white fringetree.