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Trees for shade

In hot weather we welcome the benefits of trees for shade.

Tilia - Limes for shade

In many cities parks are popular for all the right reasons - playtime, exercise or just sitting and watching the world go by - and trees enhance the park landscape.

We reap the benefits of inspired tree planters of years ago. London's Plane trees in Hyde Park and Manchester's Poplars in St. John's Garden have survived polluted conditions to offer cooling effects in summer, improve the air quality and help reduce traffic noise. Street trees improve the look of the built environment making cities a more pleasant place to live and work.

Large trees such as limes (Tilia species), Norway Maples (Acer platanoides species), Oaks (Quercus) and Planes (Platanus x hispanica) are some of the  obvious examples of trees that offer shade - trees that grow to 15m and more and have dense canopies.

Medium sized trees include Hornbeam (Carpinus betulus), Sweet Gum (Liquidambar), Alder (Alnus), and Field Maple (Acer campestre).

Smaller trees that have dense canopies such as hawthorns (Crataegus) are useful for shade aswell as June berry (Amelanchiers) and Cotoneaster. Trees that can be pruned to restrict their size in small gardens include Indian bean tree (Catalpa) and the silver willow leaved weaping pear Pyrus salicifolia Pendula.

Gardens small and large benefit from some shade in the summer, and if the garden is too small for a tree there are other options to get 'green infrastructure'. Vines can be trained over pergolas for example and Wisteria can be grown on a stem with a pruned 'crown'.

It is not the best time for planting in the heat of the summer, but it is a great time to enjoy the benefits of trees!

We hope you are enjoying the summer and don't forget to continue to water newly planted trees, shrubs and climbers in the hot weather!