Hello. I have an area in my back yard for a small shade tree. Looking at...

Asked May 3, 2015, 8:20 PM EDT

Hello. I have an area in my back yard for a small shade tree. Looking at approx., 25x15-30x20. I do not want a messy tree or shallow roots. I am in zone 4, full sun. thank you

Hennepin County Minnesota

1 Response

Many of the trees that stay that short also flower/fruit unless they are conifers. It might be difficult to find a tree that meets all of the requirements you are looking for. Most tree roots are between 6" and 18" deep, regardless of the tree.

Some of the flowering ornamental crabapples/cherries stay smaller than 20 feet as do Magnolias if you were interested in something that flowered. Some Hawthorns have deep roots and stay within the height range you are looking for, but they also bear fruit. Dogwoods might be another option to consider - they aren't messy, but they do have shallower roots.

Below is a recommended list of trees for MN.

http://www.myminnesotawoods.umn.edu/2008/11/recommended-trees-for-minnesota-by-region/