June 7, 2021 /
Jona Elwell

Trees We’ll Plant for Free

Whether your yard or planting space is on the small side, or you’re looking for a fiery accent to your landscaping, these showstoppers deliver. If you’re looking for shade, flowers, berries, or simply some greenery these trees can help you out. The best part? We plant them for FREE as part of our residential planting programs for District residents. 

American Hornbeam | Carpinus caroliniana

Not to be confused with hophornbeam, hornbeam or “musclewood” is so named because of its distinct bark – smooth, bluish-gray with a muscle-like surface. Hornbeams are small trees with fine-textured or “feathery” leaves, adding delight to any yard or garden. The hornbeam is a slow-growing tree reaching 20 feet in height over a 30-year period. It prefers light shade, but will also thrive in full sun. Let us help you plant it for free!




Eastern Redbud | Cercis canadensis

A local favorite found in forests, fields and yards – the redbud has beautiful pink and purple spring flowers, large heart-shaped leaves and attractive seed pods that release small dark seeds in the fall that are highly valued by wildlife. Redbud is often used as a garden accent under the shade of larger trees. Its stems can sometimes disfigure with age due to a fungus – also known as “canker.” Infected stems may be pruned to eliminate the infection. A fast grower, redbuds can reach 15 – 25 feet in height in approximately 15 years. It can be planted in full sun but prefers partial shade. Let us help you plant it for free!


Flowering Dogwood

Flowering Dogwood | Cornus florida

With showy, fragrant, white flowers, the flowering dogwood is a small tree found in gardens and yards throughout the DC area. Its red berries are prized by wildlife and its flowers attract pollinators such as bees and butterflies. If stressed, dogwoods are susceptible to diseases – the most common is powdery mildew of the leaves – unsightly but not life-threatening for the tree. A small, slow growing tree, dogwoods rarely exceed 20 feet in height and may be planted in full sun or in partial shade locations. Let us help you plant it for free!



Serviceberry | Amelanchier

As one would expect from a small tree in the rose family, the serviceberry has beautiful flowers and fruit that attract birds and butterflies, as well as brilliant orange-yellow foliage, and reddish bark that becomes more distinct with age. At home in full sun or partial shade, the serviceberry is a small tree reaching 20 feet in height within 20 to 25 years. Let us help you plant it for free!






Sweetbay Magnolia | Magnolia virginiana

A small evergreen tree in our area, sweetbay magnolias have lemon-scented flowers and blooms in spring forming bright-red seeds in the fall. This tree is a favorite among gardeners throughout DC. At home in sun or partial shade, this small tree will reach 15 to 20 feet in height in approximately 30 years. Let us help you plant it for free!



Witch Hazel | Hamamelis virginiana

Witch hazel is an excellent understory tree that produces fiery-yellow, fragrant flowers that stand out in the fall and winter. The extract witchhazel is distilled from the bark of young stems and roots. Grown in full sun or partial shade, witch hazel will reach 20 feet in height in 20 to 30 years. Let us help you plant it for free!