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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.

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

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Thursday - May 09, 2013

From: Cortlandt Manor, NY
Region: Northeast
Topic: Trees
Title: Trees to replace ones lost in Westchester County, NY
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

We lost a large number of trees in the forest adjacent to our home, and I plan to replant them. What species do you recommend to plant the area with natives and to keep it looking "natural."

ANSWER:

Was it Hurricane Sandy that took down your trees?  I suspect so.  If that is so, then I recommend your replacing them with the species that were lost if you know or remember which those were.  That would ensure that the trees would be growing in the correct habitat.  If, however, the trees were lost due to disease, then we should pick some other species.  I have prepared a list of native trees that are reported to grow in Westchester County, New York according to the USDA Plants Database and our New York Recommended list of plants native to the state and commercially available for landscaping.  All the trees below appear on both lists.  There are deciduous ones and evergreens, small to large, relatively fast-growing and slow-growing trees on the list.  If you would like to look at the ones on the New York Recommended list to see if there are other trees you might prefer, use the NARROW YOUR SEARCH option to limit the list by choosing "Trees" from the GENERAL APPEARANCE slot.  You can also choose other criteria that match your site.  Not all the plants on the New York Recommended list have been reported from Westchester County, but you can determine if they have by scrolling to near the bottom of the species page to the ADDITIONAL RESOURCES area and choosing the link to the USDA.   On the USDA Plants Database page click on New York on the distribution map to see the county distribution in the state.

Acer rubrum (Red maple)

Acer saccharum (Sugar maple)

Betula lenta (Sweet birch) 

Betula populifolia (Gray birch)

Carpinus caroliniana (American hornbeam) 

Carya glabra (Pignut hickory)

Carya ovata (Shagbark hickory)

Cornus florida (Flowering dogwood)

Fagus grandifolia (American beech)

Fraxinus americana (White ash)

Juniperus virginiana (Eastern red cedar)

Liriodendron tulipifera (Tulip tree)

Nyssa sylvatica (Blackgum)

Pinus strobus (Eastern white pine)

Prunus serotina (Black cherry)

Quercus alba (White oak)

Quercus coccinea (Scarlet oak)

Sassafras albidum (Sassafras)

Tsuga canadensis (Eastern hemlock)

Below are photos from our Image Gallery of some of the trees listed above.

 

From the Image Gallery


Red maple
Acer rubrum

Gray birch
Betula populifolia

American hornbeam
Carpinus caroliniana

Flowering dogwood
Cornus florida

American beech
Fagus grandifolia

Tulip tree
Liriodendron tulipifera

Blackgum
Nyssa sylvatica

Eastern white pine
Pinus strobus

White oak
Quercus alba

Scarlet oak
Quercus coccinea

Sassafras
Sassafras albidum

Eastern hemlock
Tsuga canadensis

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