There’s no denying that a backyard, whether well-manicured or wild, improves your state of mind. For example, the Japanese practice shinrin-yoku (forest bathing) for well-being, and scientists recently discovered that gardening combats depression.
However, not all plants are made equal. Introduced species can overtake a garden, outcompeting. Some trees contain toxins harmful to people and pets.
Read on to find out which backyard trees you should leave at the garden center or plant nursery.
We’re sad to say it, but the Siberian elm (Ulmus pumila) is far from one of the best trees to plant in your yard. This tree is popular because it’s relatively hardy and fast-growing, tolerating everything from droughts to heavy snow.
While it’s one of those love or hate trees for garden aesthetics, the tree itself has many downsides. It’s made of softwood, so it’s prone to damage in storms and drops its seeds and leaves all over the place.
If you’re looking for trees that don’t drop anything, avoid the weeping willow (Salix babylonica) at all costs.
That delicately draping foliage will drop all over your paths, roof, and, worst of all, into your gutters. To deal with leaf-clogged gutters, contact a professional cleaning company like Aboveallguttervac.com. Not only that, but willows seek out water, and their roaming roots can break your underground plumbing pipes.
If you dream of picnicking under a weeping willow by the riverside, save it for visits to city parks or your local botanical gardens.
When it comes to messy tree droppings, it’s hard to beat the mulberry (Morus alba).
If you have the red-fruited variety, the fallen berries will leave dark stains all over your yard. These stains are almost impossible to remove from pavers, concrete, or decking. They’re also prolific spreaders since they have aggressive roots and new trees grow a little too quickly from seed.
If you’re keen to grow mulberry for the berries, try to seek out a white berry sapling instead. However, you may still be weeding sprouts from your garden regularly.
If you’re not a fan of seafood, Bradford pear (Pyrus calleryana) numbers among the trees not to be planted near houses. This is because the fruit is not only inedible, but it smells eerily and unappealingly similar to rotting fish. So what’s the point?
These trees are also disastrously invasive, so much so that many states are moving to ban the plant altogether.
Finally, the Bradford pear is notorious for having weak stems and branches, making it a hazard in places that experience high winds or heavy snowfall.
Not All Backyard Trees Are Equal
If you’re building up a beautiful yard, focus on native trees rather than the worst trees to plant we’ve listed here. By planting backyard trees local to your state or country, you’ll provide a home for wildlife and increase the biodiversity of your area.
For more helpful gardening and yardwork tips, head back to our blog.