Do you grow many landscaping trees or are you all fruit?

I pulled out 4 landscaping trees and am all fruit…

Asian pears
(Plums all gone…black knot.)
Peaches yellow and many whites.
Apricots pulled out…too spotty production in Z6 and no room to screw around with loafers.
Euro Pear
…dream about figs…but that is it!


Doesn’t a fruit tree double as a landscape tree? :grin:


I think it all depends on whether one wishes to use one’s homesite as a palette on which to compose a beautiful mix of appeals - visual, smell and well as food.

Fruit trees can be both utilitarian for food and visual appeal, but having bigger landscape trees in the mix adds different, complementary structural and sensory contrasts. Flowering landscape trees, like non-edible crabapples or cherries, bring scents and colors at different times. A holly with red berries or a corkscrew fig is great for winter contrast. Pecan and other large nut trees give distinctive shapes and pleasant shade on a hot day. Some trees’ claim to fame is their fall color, like the crimson leaves of a tupelo. Attracting birds is another.

I think there is a lot to be said for a mix of trees that have different functions at different times of the year. When I built my home on one acre 30 years ago, I looked at my then-empty yard as a multifunctional tapestry where a few larger trees were put in only with future ascetic sense in mind - a copper beech, a couple of evergreen Southern Magnolias, a couple of complementary varieties of pecans for both shade and nuts, a distinctvely-shaped Cedar of Lebanon, four Virginia magnolias bearing aromatic white flowers around the paved patio, and a couple of other trees with distinctive shapes like a wheel tree (Trochodendron aralia). Some strategically-placed conifers serve for line-of-sight privacy from the neighbors or blocking prevailing winds. There’s many different functions that a fruit tree is not the best tree to fulfill.

Of course, if you are blessed with a lot of ground and your aim is to monetize it, it makes sense to use a major chunk of it for fruit and/or nut trees. But right around a house, I strongly feel it adds to the overall enjoyment of your home to add trees which have other functions than bearing fruit. Life is more than food…



True but fruit trees are more than just fruit. Apricots are one of my best looking trees.

The only non-fruit trees I have are pines for privacy and windbreak.


Landscaping trees and shrubs probably outnumber fruit trees and shrubs at my place.

It’s stupid hot in NC for a good portion of the year, so shade is very nice. I have neighbors who are fairly close, so screening plants are very nice. The growing season is very long and spring is very short, so having other blooming plants is very nice. And I enjoy plants that have lots of seasonal interest. And I like supporting and enriching the local ecology. Finally, I enjoy plants with lots of character or that have something special about them.

Off the top of my head, I’ve got loblolly pine, boxelder maple, red maple, sawtooth oak, overcup oak, Compton oak, Bradford pear, sweetgum, crepe myrtle, gardenia, mimosa, boxwood, various hollies, Parana pine, stone pine, several hesperocyparis species, Murray cypress, arborvitae, honey locust, Arroyo sweetwood, bigleaf magnolia, star magnolia, coast redwood, Mexican buckeye, flowing quince, prunus mume, palo verde (might not be hardy), several eucalyptus species, California bay laurel, buddleia, osmanthus, lilac, beautyberry, gingko, Carolina cherry laurel, torreya taxifolia (it’s legal here), silverberry elaeagnus, and chinaberry. I’ll hopefully adding much more over the next few years. I need more land.


i like to plant medicinal herbs and flowers to bring in pollinators that will also pollinate my fruit trees. win/ win for everyone.

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Lol…My Fruit trees are tolerated in the yard dominated by the wife’s flowering plants. She has collected many for decades from ladies with huge collections who have retired or passed away. I do not even pretend to know what most of them are.

Sometimes she tackles ones she can not handle. A retiring property owner was trying to get her to take a 65 year old cactus of some kind. A tall spindly cactus tree really. It was taller then the house. Bearing flowers , then fruit the length of the sides of the plant in 4 rows.

We were going to try to get it home on a long cattle trailer. But it was up against the house and impossible to dig out with the sidewalk so close. Hopefully the new owners keep it going.


I have all fruit trees. It’s exciting to grow and taste the fruits of your labor, lol. I was even thinking of pulling out an ornamental tree and replacing it with a persimmon tree.


We will have fruit trees primarily in the orchard, tropicals and other less hardy trees in the greenhouse, windbreak trees up wind, and whatever my wife wants in the yard ( l as long as it can’t reach the house if blown down nor have it’s roots reach out septic system)

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I am slowly transitioning to all food trees. I do think really large shade trees add to the look of a home and provide some shade to help utility bills and give you something to sit under on hot days. So I planted some pecan and chestnut trees. 14 years flew by and they are already nice sized trees and will soon be large shade trees. They bear great nuts too, so its win-win.

There are also some fruit trees that I think are as beautiful as any landscape tree. My cherries in spring, full of blooms, are as stunning as non-fruiting, ornamental cherries like they have in D.C. I have 2 red-leafed stone fruits that are stunning as trees. Weeping Santa Rosa are also unique, beautiful, and make good eating. I actually have figs as my shrubs around my house. Now this isn’t for everyone since they drop leaves and look bad in winter, but I don’t mind and its nice getting such tasty treats from my household shrubs. I could go on and on, but I think its pretty easy in todays world to have beautiful trees that also produce edibles.


I feel that I work hard for my soil, wheelbarrow-ing 20 cu yds of wood chips 2x a year all over the front and backyard, trimming, weeding, etc… So I better get something out of it.

I see my neighbor who only has ornamentals and plants “for the bees”. She gets satisfaction from saving bees and helping monarchs migrate I guess, but I feel I achieve the same plus I get fruit!

So yeah, 90% of my plants are fruit.

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The Pawpaw tree was voted by Better Homes and Gardens, in the year 2000, as the landscape tree of the year.


This is a challenging topic to address. I think the better question is about utility of a particular tree. Fruit, ornamental value, shade, pollinator friendly, nitrogen fixing, timber, or other uses can all be viable reasons to plant a tree.

I’m into edible landscaping. I would use fruit trees instead. Such as cornus mas which will keep its lower limbs if pruned. It makes n amazing edible hedge. You can knock hundreds of dollars off your cooling costs with a good shade tree. A full size cherry has huge leaves and makes an excellent shade tree. I myself would not do this though. I would use something else. But it will work for shade.
Some good points you make though. I say do what you like. Whatever plant it is. I love the leaves of the tri-color beech. So yes I have one in my yard.
Technically a nut tree but it’s by itself. So no nuts.

I’m not a fan of having huge trees that can crush my house/kill me when they fail/die and/or shade out much of the property to productive use and that will cost thousands of dollars to get rid of when they do eventually die and dump tens of thousands of leaves to find something to do with/remove from on top of everything I plant in the Fall every year. edit: Small suburban yard here, other people are allowed to like whatever it is they like.