Best Shade Trees for Your Landscape

Best Shade Trees for your landscape

If you are looking for the best shade trees for your landscape, here are a few ideas.

Whether you have a large yard or a small yard, there is a tree for you.

Renting a place and still want a tree? Grow some container trees so you can take them with you when you move. Don't think it's possible?  Check out this short 1 minute video on how to grow trees in containers.

Note that he mentions cutting the top off. That is the key to stopping the tree from getting any taller. It will grow outwards instead of up. You just have to keep them trimmed to the size you want.


I don't have enough room in my backyard to grow trees so I get them from other grower in Ontario. If there is a tree you would like, let me know and I will see if I can get it.


Want to know what will grow around a Walnut tree? This is an article that tells you what will grow in your yard. I wrote this article because I have been asked what will grow under and around a Walnut tree.

Best Shade Trees for Large Yards


Maple Tree (Acer)

Maple Trees

They are perfect backyard shade trees for any size yard. There are many different species, from very large to small ornamental tree. 

They all have excellent fall colour with their bright red to yellow to orange leaf colour.


Aspens (Populus tremuloides)

Aspen Trees

Good for filling in spaces that have been cleared as they produce root suckers that quickly grow into more trees. They grow about 2.5 feet per year and have a very nice fall colour of bright yellow leaves.

If you want to grow just one tree in your yard, make sure to remove any suckers that might appear around the base of the tree.


Oaks (Quercus)

Oak Trees

A great shade tree for your yard. They grow to about 70 feet tall and 9 feet wide. They are considered a fast growing tree growing about 3 feet per year when they are young.


Willows (Salix)

Willow Tree

Very fast growing tree and reaches maturity in as little as 15 years. They love to have their roots close to a water source and will stretch their roots out to find it. 

They can grow up to 50 feet tall and wide so they do need a lot of space.


Katsura (Cercidiphyllum)

An amazing 4 season interest tree that is great as a shade tree. It can grow up to 60 feet tall with yellow to orange fall colour.

The best part of this tree is that when it's dropping it's leaves in the fall, it gives off a faint smell of cotton candy that fills the air.

Best Shade Trees for Small Yards

Dogwoods (Cornus florida)

Ornamental Dogwood trees growing in a nursery

can get very large but you can train them to stay small. They would make a very nice ornamental tree for your landscape.

They can be grown in full sun but do better in part shade. In the wild they grow under larger trees so they are protected from the sun.


Adding the best shade trees to your landscape not only provides you with shade, it also attracts wildlife to your yard.


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