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Recommended Trees for Mount Washington Residents


Working together, the Mount Washington Preservation Trust and the Mount Washington Improvement Association have developed this list of trees that are most suited for planting in the Mount Washington neighborhood.  It is anticipated that this list will assist residents in making sustainable choices for both new tree plantings and replacement tree plantings.  Included with the recommended trees is additional information that will assist the homeowner in planting the right tree in the right place.  Trees were evaluated on the following characteristics before being included in the recommended list:

  • Suitability for climate and soils
  • Suitability for residential properties
  • Watering requirements
  • Storm resistance
  • Wildlife value
  • Seasonal interest
  • Low maintenance
  • Adaptability to changing environmental conditions
  • Insect and disease resistance
  • Bio-diversity

While all of these characteristics are important, for the large trees on this list, suitability, storm resistance and insect and disease resistance were among the most important criteria.  Large trees toppled or broken in storms, or downed by damage caused by insect and disease often cause considerable damage to property and utilities. Also, large trees poorly selected or located are often later removed by homeowners.

The list provides the botanical name, the common name, the ultimate size and spread of the tree and other pertinent information.  Sizes indicated are averages, trees will vary from the average.  Deer resistance is not included as experience has shown that deer “resistance” is a misnomer.   In selecting the tree or trees for your property, please use this information to assist you not only in selecting the proper tree, but also where to place it on your property.   

Some general tips for proper location of trees:

  • Maintain site lines at intersections; don’t block visibility by planting too close to the corner.
  • Note overall width and height of trees; don’t plant too close to your foundation.  (Rule of thumb, setback trees a minimum of 1/2 the mature width of the tree, farther for trees with extensive root systems)
  • Don’t plant trees too close together.  (Rule of thumb no closer than 16 feet apart for smaller trees, 35- 40 feet for larger trees)  Cutting out trees later is expensive and difficult, especially when they have reached full size.
  • Note your neighbor’s house, walk, patio and driveway location and maintain proper setbacks.
  • Setback trees a minimum of ½ the mature width of the tree from sidewalks, drives, and patios to prevent root damage.
  • Know where your utilities are before planting.  Call “miss utility” to have the lines marked if you are not sure.  Know where your sewer and water lines are also, to avoid conflict
  • Look up.  Note overhead utilities and check the final size of tree you want to plant, setback accordingly, or choose a smaller tree.


List of recommended medium to large trees (n-denotes native)

Recommended small trees (n-denotes native) 

Nice trees that have some limitations and Trees to be avoided/ trees not to plant 

For further information on these and other trees the following websites are very helpful:


For one of the best manuals on woody landscape materials, including trees see: 

Manual of Woody Landscape Plants, by Michael Dirr.