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Trees: Organic Life for Your Homestead

Utility

According to Green Living Expert. Marc Lallanilla, “A wind break helps to stabilize the temperature in your yard and your house in two ways. First, wind speed is reduced in winter, which keeps warm air inside your house. Second, shade trees in summer keep the house temperature lower, thereby lowering energy costs from airconditioning and cooling.” If your homestead is anywhere in the Midwest or the Great Plains, you know the power of the wind, so doing whatever possible to lessen its impact on your home is important. Check out the following link to the Arbor Day Organization. If you have a question about trees, these are the people to contact, and they have wonderful ways to obtain trees far more reasonably than almost anywhere. This is important if you need a significant number of trees for a windbreak. How to Plant a Windbreak to Conserve Energy – Climate Change at …www.arborday.org

figure-windbreak

Privacy

One of the best things about homestead life is the privacy factor – being able to sit out on the deck with a hot morning coffee in your skivvies. In order to do that one must have the perfect windbreak. Of course, it also works well to stop the strong prairie winds. Here are some of the best hardy choices for your homestead.

Cypress

The lovely ‘Blue Sapphire’ Cypress forms a thick privacy screen, and it is one of the most drought tolerant of any evergreen! There is no need to worry about heat waves and water restrictions, and it is adaptable to various soil types. According to the Arbor Day Foundation, “Planting a row of conifer trees on the north and northwest sides of your property creates a wall against cold winter winds – saving your heating costs by up to 30%.”

'Blue Sapphire' Cypress
‘Blue Sapphire’ Cypress

Beauty:

Pin Oak

  • The Pin oak tree has a pyramidal shape in its early years, and changes into an oval as it matures and loses lower branches. In wet soil and full sun, it can grow more than 25 inches a year. It has glossy green leaves that change to bronze, russet, and bright red before falling in autumn. Pin oaks reach up to 70 feet tall with a 45-foot spread that creates cool, shady spots.
photo:flickr CC
photo:flickr CC

Serviceberry

  • Serviceberries are great specimen plants that work well with almost any landscape. Brilliant white flowers
    in early to mid-spring precede clusters of berries that birds love, and they can be used in pies. They grow to
    a height of 20’ and 15’ wide. Fall color is a spectacular
    red/orange. A problem-free tree!
Serviceberry
photo:Miguel Vieira via flickr

With a fully arbored homestead, you can watch the beautiful change of deciduous leaves, eat a sweet peach cobbler
with a strong, creamy coffee behind your own green privacy screen – in whatever you want to wear – or not

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