4 Tips For Growing Yellow Poplars For Shade Without Threatening The Safety Of Your Property

Construction & Contractors Articles

Whether you call them tulip trees or yellow poplars, these trees that actually belong to the magnolia family are great for shading your home because they grow quickly and reach a mature width of 50 feet to provide a lot of canopy cover. While these shade trees are less troublesome than many other species that grow as quickly, they still need care and attention as they grow to turn into a safe and beautiful part of the landscape. Take these steps with your new yellow poplars to guide them to healthy growth.

Stick to Full Sun

If you're trying to grow a strong tree that doesn't lean or develop weak branches that will drop later, make sure you have a sunny area for planting the poplar so it's not shaded or facing a lot of competition from other trees. Overcrowding these trees or planting them in a shady spot results in a thin, tall tree with a reduced canopy and an unattractive shape. You'll only get a healthy, strong, and wide pyramid or dome shaped canopy by giving the tree as much sun as possible, in addition to plenty of water in the first few years of growth.

Prune Vigorously

Yellow poplars benefit from a few different types of pruning at various points in their growth cycle. Aside from the usual trimming of dead and disease branches that all trees need, this species needs attention from a tree trimming service for

  • Creating more space between the new canopy scaffolding branches that are just forming on a young sapling
  • Removing low growing branches as the tree gains height since bottom branches are eventually dropped by the tree
  • Trimming away the water sprouts that pop up around every major cut made on the tree.

Try to avoid topping and removal of the growing point of the tree's leaders, which are the vertical sections of the trunk. Cutting off the tip of the highest growth will keep the tree from growing taller but only at the expense of the tree's beautiful canopy form. A yellow poplar that is topped will form a weak umbrella shape and is more likely to lose branches regularly for the rest of its lifespan. Stick with a smaller tree species if a potential height of up to 90 feet tall is too high for your yard.

Train to One Leader

Speaking of leaders, it's best to trim the yellow poplar to have a single strong and straight leader section of the trunk rather than two, three, or more sections forming the canopy. Multiple leaders increase the risk of a large section of the tree falling off and potentially hurting a family member or damaging your roof. Leader divisions of the trunk tend to form a very tight crotch between the vertical sections, and that crotch traps water and falling leaves to create a site for rot that leads to an unhealthy and dangerous tree.

Trim off trunk sections that split away from the main growth as soon as you notice them so the effect on the tree is minimized. It's a major job for a tree service to trim away a full grown leader that is a foot or two thick, and the resulting wound can also let disease into the heartwood.

Avoid Root Pruning

Finally, keep the poplar away from sidewalks, paved driveways, and other structures that could be damaged by spreading roots. The poplar's roots are relatively shallow and don't extend far beyond the leaf canopy. Root pruning is a proven method for preventing damage to sidewalks and foundations, but yellow poplars are sensitive to this kind of pruning and may die off or tip over after this kind of treatment. If you absolutely must prune the roots, ask the tree service to work on no more than 1/4th of the root growth at a time and wait a few years between trims so the tree can recover.

For more tips, contact local tree services like Schulhoff Tree & Lawn Care, Inc.


17 May 2016

Adding a Man Cave to Your Home: Tips

I have always loved baseball, and when the world series arrives each year, I enjoy inviting my friends over to watch the games. As our family grew, it became difficult for all of our guests to fit in our living room. We decided that we needed a dedicated "man cave" in our home, but we didn't have an extra room to build it in. We thought long and hard about how we could add it, but we finally decided to turn our garage into the man cave and have a carport built onto our home to park our cars under. I have always been interested in learning more handy-work, so I enjoyed watching the contractors build both the man cave and car port. I thought I would start a blog to share what I learned during the building process to help other homeowners!