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Mr. Smarty Plants - Fast-growing medium-sized tree for New Jersey

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Saturday - July 06, 2013

From: Millington, NJ
Region: Northeast
Topic: Trees
Title: Fast-growing medium-sized tree for New Jersey
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I'm looking for trees to put on a slight slope that will do well in rocky clay soil. I 'm in N.J. zone 6. The spot is full sun and would like a fast grower 50 ft high maximum. I'm replacing white pines we took down.Sandy dropped one on the roof. Thanks

ANSWER:

In our New Jersey Recommended list of commercially available native species for landscaping in the state I found the following trees that were about the size you want and all will grow in clay soils.  You should look through the New Jersey Recommended list yourself to see if you see any other trees that interest you.   You can use the NARROW YOUR SEARCH option to limit the lists to trees by picking "Tree" in the General Appearance slot.

Betula populifolia (Gray birch) is a fast grower and grows to a maximum of 50 feet.  Unfortunately, its fast growth also means it is short-lived.  Here is more information from Missouri Botanical Garden.

Carpinus caroliniana (American hornbeam) grows 35 to 50 feet high.  Here is more information from Missouri Botanical Garden which reports it as slow-growing.

Cercis canadensis (Eastern redbud) has a fast to moderate growth rate and generally grows to 15 feet, but can grow as tall as 30 feet.   It has beautiful blossoms in the spring.  Here is more information from North Carolina State University and Ohio State University.

Nyssa sylvatica (Blackgum) grows 30 to 60 feet high and will grow in clay soil but it is slow growing.  Here is more information from Missouri Botanical Garden.

Prunus virginiana (Chokecherry) grpws 20-30 feet and will grow in clay soil.  Sagebud describes its growth rate as rapid.

Asimina triloba (Pawpaw) grows 10 to 40 feet and will grow in clay soil.  Here's more information from Missouri Botanical Garden.  It has a medium growth rate according to the University of Connecticul Horticulture.

Fraxinus pennsylvanica (Green ash) grows 50 to 75 feet and will grow in clay soils.  Here is more information from Missouri Botanical Garden.  It has a fast growth rate according to the University of Connecticut Horticulture.

 

From the Image Gallery


Gray birch
Betula populifolia

American hornbeam
Carpinus caroliniana

Eastern redbud
Cercis canadensis var. canadensis

Blackgum
Nyssa sylvatica

Chokecherry
Prunus virginiana

Pawpaw
Asimina triloba

Green ash
Fraxinus pennsylvanica

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