Sourwood
Sourwood

 

Sweet Bay Magnolia
Sweet Bay Magnolia

 

Turkish Filbert
Turkish Filbert

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Looking for a tree ideal for tough situations commonly encountered in the landscape?  Three conditions that homeowners may have to contend with are:

1)    Drought prone areas
2)    Low and/or moist areas
3)    Shade benefiting areas
 

The trees best suited for each situation:

1)    Turkish Filbert: wonderful for drought prone areas. The Turkish Filbert is a deciduous tree that grows 40 to 50 feet tall and has a beautiful pyramidal shape, especially when young. The tree trunk sports an interestingly ridged and corky bark that is tan or gray in color. The Turkish Filbert leaves are a lush, dark green and are about 5 inches long. The Turkish Filbert is hardy to Zone 5, therefore appropriate for planting in the Chicago area. In addition to drought tolerance, the Turkish Filbert also tolerates a variety of soil conditions that may be less than ideal.

2)    Sweet Bay Magnolia: great for low or moist areas. The Sweet Bay Magnolia is a smaller tree that grows 15 to 20 feet tall and is found both as a single or multi-trunk tree. The highly fragrant, creamy white flowers appear in May or June. The vanilla fragrance of the Sweet Bay Magnolia flowers may be carried several hundred yards away. The tree bark is smooth and gray and the inner bark layer has a mildly spicy scent. Another wonderful feature of the Sweet Bay Magnolia is the bright red seeds, which are relished by birds. The Sweet Bay Magnolia is hardy in Zones 5 through 9.

3)    Sourwood or Sorrel Tree: fantastic for shady areas. The Sourwood is a slow growing tree that ultimately reaches 50 feet in height. The leaves grow up to 3 ½” long with serrated edges. The leaves turn from dark green in the summer to a vibrant red in fall. The Sourwood bears beautiful, fragrant creamy white flowers in June and July. The Sourwood is also perfectly suited for the Chicago area.

All three trees are magnificent additions to the landscape. They are not frequently used, making the Turkish Filbert, Sweet Bay Magnolia and Sourwood tree perfect for moving us closer to the goal of tree species diversity in the community.

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