En EspaŅol

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
    
 
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions
Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.
 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Saturday - April 24, 2010

From: San Ramon, CA
Region: California
Topic: Trees
Title: Trees for pool area in San Ramon, California
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

We live in San Ramon. We are remodeling our pool and are looking for a tree that will be 15 feet from a pool. We just removed a pine tree. We have now lost our privacy and see the neighbor's back fence on their hillside. What can we plant that will be about 15 feet high, 10 feet wide at most, direct sunlight, that will not be messy near our pool, yet pretty both during every season.

ANSWER:

Below are several evergreen trees in approximately the size range you are seeking that are native to Northern California:

Prunus ilicifolia ssp. lyonii (hollyleaf cherry)

Umbellularia californica (California laurel)

Lithocarpus densiflorus (tanoak) and here are photos and more information

Heteromeles arbutifolia (toyon)

Cercocarpus ledifolius (curl-leaf mountain mahogany) and here are photos and more information

Ceanothus thyrsiflorus (blueblossom)

Morella californica (California wax myrtle) and here are photos and more information

Rhododendron macrophyllum (Pacific rhododendron)

You can see more suggested species by going to our Recommended Species page and choosing Northern California from the map or the pull-down menu.  You can use the NARROW YOUR SEARCH option in the side menu to select for characteristics that you want.

Here are photos from our Image Gallery of some of the above:


Prunus ilicifolia ssp. lyonii

Umbellularia californica

Heteromeles arbutifolia

Ceanothus thyrsiflorus

Rhododendron macrophyllum

 

 

More Trees Questions

Are brown junipers (Juniperus ashei) dead?
November 08, 2011 - If the cedar/junipers in our area are brown, will they ever come back green? Or just clear them out as dead. There are many of them due to the drought. Thank you.
view the full question and answer

Ashe Juniper not doing well in San Antonio
April 08, 2010 - A large ash juniper (mountain cedar) in my yard appears to be sick or dying. Approximately 1/4 of the canopy has very sparse needles/green foliage stuff and shaggier than normal bark. It's not brown ...
view the full question and answer

Tilling for grass under old live oak in San Antonio
April 15, 2012 - Hi, I have a 250+ year old Texas Live Oak. As usual, the lawn under the tree, after 18 years needs to be redone. MY QUESTION: to put down new sod the lawn company needs to till the soil about 4 t...
view the full question and answer

Non-native invasive carrot wood tree losing leaves in Alpine CA
April 22, 2014 - My carrot wood tree is losing all of its leaves. The tree is about 15foot high & 13 years old. Could it be gophers? The tree was trimmed 1 year ago.
view the full question and answer

Distinguish between Huisache and Goldenball Leadtree
March 23, 2008 - How do you distinguish between Huisache (Acacia farnesiana) and Goldenball Leadtree (Leucaena retusa)? Thanks!
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP | STAFF
© 2015 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center