April 23rd, 2016 10:53 AM by Jackie A. Graves
1. Silver maple (Acer saccharinum)
Big, fast-growing, and a dandy shade tree,
silver maple is widespread in eastern states and the Midwest. Unfortunately,
the speed at which the tree grows makes for weak, brittle wood that may break
during severe storms. The
shallow root system invades sewage pipes and drain fields, and is notorious for
cracking driveways and walkways.
2. Ash (Fraxinus)
Sturdy and tough, the many varieties of ash
that populate North America are some of our most beloved trees. Professional
baseball bats are made from its wood — how American is that? But the venerable
ash is threatened by the emerald ash borer, a
tiny beetle that’s on track to wipe out the species. If you’re looking for a
long-term tree for your yard, look elsewhere.
3. Quaking Aspen (Populus tremuloides)
The aspen is found in northern climes and
higher elevations. Its white bark and gently vibrating leaves are attractive, but
its root system is insidious, sending up dozens of suckers that relentlessly
try to turn into new trees. Once established, it’s war. In fact, the largest
living organism in the world is a Colorado aspen root system called Pando. It
weighs 6,600 tons and is thought to be 80,000 years old. Try digging that out!
4. Lombardy Poplar (P.
The Lombardy poplar was once a favorite
landscaping tree known for its speedy growth (up to 6 feet a year) and
distinctive columnar shape. However, they’re prone to a number of diseases and
bugs that turn them into raggedy eyesores, and their running roots are invasive
and difficult to eradicate.
5. Willow (Salix)
With its long, slender branches that hang
down like Rapunzel’s tresses, the willow is one of the most recognizable of all
trees. Beautiful on the outside, yes, but the willow has an aggressive,
water-hungry root system that terrorizes drain fields, sewer lines, and irrigation pipes.
The wood is weak and prone to cracking, and the tree is relatively short-lived,
lasting only about 30 years.
Imported from Australia and popularized for
their speedy growth — some varieties will shoot up 10 feet in a year — the
eucalyptus has a bad rap for suddenly and unexpectedly dropping big, heavy,
resin-filled branches. In some areas of Australia, campers are warned not to
pitch tents under eucalyptus trees. Its showy bark peels off annually and adds
to seasonal maintenance chores.
7. Bradford pear (Pyrus calleryana)
The Bradford pear was imported to the U.S.
from China in the early 1900s as replacement for orchard trees that were dying.
With its compact shape and profusion of spring blossoms, the Bradford pear
became a suburban favorite — until folks realized that it was highly prone to
splitting and cracking when it reached maturity. And those blossoms? They’re on
the stinky side of the fragrance scale.
8. Mountain cedar (Juniperus ashei)
Stay away from the mountain cedar in late
winter. This bushy tree, native to the south central U.S., releases massive
amounts of pollen during the cooler months, causing severe allergic reactions
in many people. Even if you don’t have allergies, planting
one in your yard may affect your neighbors.
9. Mulberry (Morus)
Big surface roots, lots of pollen, messy
fruit, and shade so dense that grass refuses to grow
underneath. What’s to like about the mulberry? If you’re a silkworm, the answer
is: Plenty! The mulberry is the silkworm’s only source of food. Silkworm
farmers should plant away! Otherwise, you’ll be happier with a different kind
of tree in your yard.
10. Black walnut (Juglans nigra)
Native to North America, this well-known
shade tree produces prized cabinet- and furniture-making wood. It also
produces pollen and plenty of fruit that’ll drive you, well, nuts when you have
to clean it all up in the fall. It’s true sinister side, however, is that it
secretes growth-inhibiting toxins that kill nearby plants, wreaking havoc on
flower beds and vegetable gardens.
11. Leyland cypress (Cupressocyparis
These fast-growing evergreen trees are
favored for their ability to quickly create a living privacy screen.
However, they require constant upkeep and trimming to keep them healthy, and as
they get taller they’re increasingly likely to uproot during storms. The center
of the tree forms a mass of dried twigs and branches that are considered such a
fire hazard that many communities officially caution residents against planting
By: John Riha - To view the original article click here