Arizona Community Tree Council

1106 N. Gilbert Road

Suite 2-160

Mesa, Arizona 85203

602-354-3023


Sunset Zones 3A and 3B Planting Guide

Engleman Spruce

Engleman Spruce Genus / species: Picea engelmannii
Family: Pinaceae

Species characteristics
Size: 150' x 60'
Flowers: Cone bearing
Leaves: Bluish-green needles, 1/2 - 1" long
Bark: Grayish or purplish-brown, thin & scaly
Fruit: Light brown papery cones, 1" - 2-1/2" long

Comments/tree care:
• Densely branched
• Slow growth rate
• Recommended for parklike areas or large yards
• Prefers fine, moist soils with good drainage
• Long life span

 

Douglas Fir

Douglas Fir

Genus / species: Pseudotsuga menziesii var. glauca
Family: Pinaceae

Species characteristics
Size: 100' x 30'
Flowers: Cone bearing
Leaves: Dark green needles, 1" - 1-1/2" long
Bark: Reddish brown, very thick when mature
Fruit: Reddish brown, 3" long oval shaped cones

Comments/tree care:
• Sharply pyramidal form when young
• Moderate growth rate
• Recommended for parklike areas or large yards
• Prefers coarse, well drained soils
• Wind tolerant

 

Quaking Aspen

Quaking Aspen

Genus / species: Populus tremuloides
Family: Salicaceae

Species characteristics
Size: 20' - 60' x 15'
Flowers: Showy catkins in early spring
Leaves: Bright green rounded leaves
Bark: Smooth, whitish to gray, thin bark
Fruit: Woolly capsule enclosing 6 - 8 small hairy seeds

Comments/tree care:
• Thin crowns that are oval to columnar
• Fast growth rate
• Yellow to red fall color
• Good accent tree or in groups
• Invasive roots, avoid planting near streets or water lines
• Dioecious

 

Ponderosa Pine

Ponderosa Pine

Genus / species: Pinus ponderosa
Family: Pinaceae

Species characteristics
Size: 120' x 30'
Flowers: Cone bearing
Leaves: 7" needles in bundles of 2, 3 or 5
Bark: Blackish to reddish plated
Fruit: Reddish-brown, 3" - 6" cones

Comments/tree care:
• Columnar to rounded oval crown
• Moderate-fast growth rate
• Tolerant of most soils if well drained
• Long lived
• Drought tolerant
• Allow for 30' x 30' planting area

 

White Fir

White Fir

Genus / species: Populus tremuloides
Family: Salicaceae

Species characteristics
Size: 20' - 60' x 15'
Flowers: Showy catkins in early spring
Leaves: Bright green rounded leaves
Bark: Smooth, whitish to gray, thin bark
Fruit: Woolly capsule enclosing 6 - 8 small hairy seeds

Comments/tree care:
• Thin crowns that are oval to columnar
• Fast growth rate
• Yellow to red fall color
• Good accent tree or in groups
• Invasive roots, avoid planting near streets or water lines
• Dioecious

 

Alligator Juniper

Alligator Juniper

Genus / species: Juniperus deppeana
Family: Cupressaceae

Species characteristics
Size: 25' x 20'
Flowers: inconspicuous
Leaves: Scale-like, bluish green
Bark: Gray with checkered pattern
Fruit: Bluish, berry-like, pea-sized

Comments/tree care:
• Short, sturdy trunk
• Slow growth rate
• Suited for hot dry sites
• Little maintenance
• Produces large amounts of pollen

 

Colorado Blue Spruce

Colorado Blue Spruce

Genus / species: Picea pungens glauca
Family: Pinaceae

Species characteristics
Size: 100' x 40'
Flowers: Cone bearing
Leaves: Bluish-gray or green, 1-1/2" long, stiff
Bark: Gray or brown and scaly
Fruit: Light brown papery cones, 2" - 4" long

Comments/tree care:
• Densely branched
• Slow growth rate
• Pyramidal shape
• Recommended for parklike areas or large yards
• Sensitive to soil compaction
• Drought sensitive

 

Gambel Oak

Gambel Oak

Genus / species: Quercus gambelli
Family: Fagaceae

Species characteristics
Size: 20' - 30' x 15'
Flowers: inconspicuous Leaves: Dark green lobed leaves, 2" - 6" long
Bark: Gray or brown with thick scaly bark
Fruit: Egg shaped acorns

Comments/tree care:
• Forms thickets from creeping root system
• Very slow growth rate
• Foliage turns yellow, orange or red in fall
• Good landscape tree if you have time to wait

 

Silver Maple

Silver Maple

Genus / species: Acer saccharinum
Family: Aceraceae

Species characteristics
Size: 50' - 80' x 60' - 60'
Flowers: Inconspicuous
Leaves: Lobed 3" x 6", green top w/silver bottom
Bark: Silvery gray bark
Fruit: Double-winged samara, 1-1/4" x 2"

Comments/tree care:
• Short, stout trunk
• Fast growth rate
• Train scaffold branches to wide crotch angles
• Gold fall color
• Ice and snow damage in colder zones

 

Arizona Sycamore

Arizona Sycamore

Genus / species: Acer saccharinum
Family: Aceraceae

Species characteristics
Size: 40' - 80' x 60' x 80'
Flowers: Inconspicuous spherical flowers
Leaves: Palmately veined, three to fi ve lobes, 4" - 8" wide
Bark: Grayish to white
Fruit: 1" bristly brown spheres on long stalks

Comments/tree care:
• Recommended for park-like areas or large yards
• Fast growth rate
• Prefers rich, moist soil
• Long lived
• Needs ample water

 

Boxelder

Boxelder

Genus / species: Acer negundo
Family: Aceraceae

Species characteristics
Size: 30' - 50' x 30' x 40'
Flowers: Inconspicuous
Leaves: Pinnately compound with 3-7 leaflets
Bark: Light gray brown bark
Fruit: Double-winged samara, 1-1/2" long

Comments/tree care:
• Irregular shaped crown
• Fast growth rate
• Early yellow fall color
• Tolerant of nearly all soils
• Tolerates windy areas

 

Flowering Pear

Flowering Pear

Genus / species: Pyrus calleryana
Family: Rosaceae

Species characteristics
Size: 25' tall x 15' wide
Flowers: Small, 3/8" showy white flowers
Leaves: Dark green, glossy, leathery, oval
Bark: Dark gray with scaly ridges
Fruit: Small inedible

Comments/tree care:
• Prune to create central leader
• Moderate growth rate
• Tolerates wind and frost
• Roots are deep and spreading

 

Red Oak

Red Oak

Genus / species: Quercus rubra
Family: Fagaceae

Species characteristics
Size: 90' x 60'
Flowers: Inconspicuous
Leaves: Dark green, slender lobed 5" x 3"
Bark: Gray, smooth
Fruit: Large acorns up to 1-1/4"

Comments/tree care:
• Young trees pyramidal, spreading when older
• Moderate growth rate
• Dark red, brown or orange fall color
• Deep rooted
• Recommended for large yards

 

Austrian Pine

Austrian Pine

Genus / species: Quercus rubra
Family: Fagaceae

Species characteristics
Size: 20' - 60' tall x 20' wide
Flowers: Cone bearing
Leaves: Evergreen. Needles in bundles of 2, 4" - 6" long
Bark: Gray bark
Fruit: 2" - 3" yellowish-brown cones

Comments/tree care:
• Tolerant of moist soils if well drained
• Moderate growth rate
• Transplants easily
• Tolerates cold, wind, salt and air pollution

 

Pinyon Pine

Pinyon Pine

Genus / species: Pinus edulis
Family: Pinaceae

Species characteristics
Size: 20' - 30' x 15'
Flowers: Cone bearing
Leaves: Needles in bundles of 2, 1" - 2" long
Bark: Gray to reddish brown bark
Fruit: Reddish brown, 2" long

Comments/tree care:
• Round or oval crown with dense foliage
• Slow growth rate
• Prefers coarse, well drained soil
• Susceptible to bark beetles when stressed
• Nuts are prized by people and birds
• Drought tolerant

 

Black Locust

Black Locust

Genus / species: Robinia pseudoacacia
Family: Fabaceae

Species characteristics
Size: 75' x 40' x 50'
Flowers: White, fragrant, pea-like in clusters
Leaves: Pinnate, 12" long with oval leaflets
Bark: Light gray to brown, thick
Fruit: Bean pods 4" long

Comments/tree care:
• Open, sparse branching
• Fast growth rate
• Shallow, aggressive roots
• Tolerant of coarse soils

 

Thornless Honey Locust

Thornless Honey Locust

Genus / species: Gleditsia triacanthos
Family: Caesalpiniaceae

Species characteristics
Size: 35' - 70' x 20' - 50'
Flowers: Inconspicuous bell-shaped
Leaves: Bipinnately compound, 15 - 30 leaflets Bark: Gray-brown or black
Fruit: 12" long seed pods

Comments/tree care:
• Round spreading shape
• Fast growth rate
• Yellow fall color
• Tolerates most soils if well drained
• Light shade

 

Siberian Elm

Siberian Elm

Genus / species: Ulmus pumila
Family: Ulmaceae

Species characteristics
Size: 60' tall x 30' wide
Flowers: Insignificant flowers
Leaves: 1"-2" long, dark green, smooth
Bark: Dark gray bark with deep crevices
Fruit: Papery, winged seeds

Comments/tree care:
• Resistant to Dutch elm disease
• Moderate - fast growth rate
• Suitable for difficult sites
• Brittle wood

 

Atlas Cedar

Atlas Cedar

Genus / species: Cedrus atlantica
Family: Pinaceae

Species characteristics
Size: 60' x 30'
Flowers: Cone bearing
Leaves: Bluish green 1" needles
Bark: Silvery gray and fissured
Fruit: Brown 3" cones

Comments/tree care:
• Pyramidal when young, flat crown at maturity
• Moderate growth rate
• Evergreen
• Tolerates most soils if well drained
• Drought tolerant

 

Arizona Cypress

Arizona Cypress

Genus / species: Cupressus arizonica
Family: Cupressaceae

Species characteristics
Size: 40' - 50' x 20' x 25'
Flowers: Inconspicuous
Leaves: Dark green, scale like
Bark: Dark brown
Fruit: Smooth cone

Comments/tree care:
• Tall pyramidal form
• Fast growth rate
• Heat and drought tolerant
• Use as focal or accent plant

 

Netleaf Hackberry

Netleaf Hackberry Genus / species: Celtis reticulata
Family: Ulmaceae
Species characteristics
Size: 30' x 30'
Flowers: Gray green, thick, rough
Leaves: Dark green, scalelike
Bark: Reddish brown to ash gray, rough
Fruit: 1/2" drupe, relished by birds

Comments/tree care:
• Tall pyramidal form
• Fast growth rate
• Heat and drought tolerant
• Use as focal or accent plant
Netleaf Hackberry makes for an excellent native shade tree in the urban areas of the Sonoran Desert.

 

 




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