Shade tree recommendations?

Hello all,

I’m looking for a shade tree to replace a Norway maple that I’m in the process of removing. I’m located in central PA zone 7. The site is approximately twenty feet away from my house. I’m looking for something long lived, durable, and hopefully one that won’t attract excess deer, squirrels, etc. Anything close to fitting the bill will thrive here?

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evergreens give the best shade here year round and dont lose leaves every fall. the fastest growing here is the norway spruce. they make great windbreaks also and arent prone to branches breaking off in storms.

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Mulberry makes a lovely shade tree. Illinois Everbearing is supposed to be good.

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Chinese ash tree? Not sure where you find them.

Kentucky coffee tree. Drought resistant. Not prone to ice damage like most trees – look very naked in the winter. Males won’t drop pods…although the leaf stems make lovely magic wands :slight_smile:


Black gum! Best fall foliage out there and bees and birds love it.

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magnolia stellata are supposed to flower in shade well. Although not all shade is equally shady. So im not sure how well it will work.

Magnolia’s are amazingly beatiful. However not evergreen or edible. And i have no idea if dear will destroy them.

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It’s just me, but I don’t want any trees within 20’ of my house. I don’t want any trees within 100’ of my house for that matter…


Bald Cypress perhaps…

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If you want something that doesn’t get too tall Japanese Maples are nice. There is a large selection that get 10 to 20 ft high. The coral bark one Sango Kaku can get 20-25 ft high.


The previous tree was at least 60 to 80 feet tall I’m guessing. I want something large enough to provide some shade for the house in the summer. Hopefully a variety that wont cause the same issue that my norway maple did in my lifetime.

Im from a different continent so can’t advise on if they will thrive in your specific climate.

Walnuts probably are disqualified due to squirl atractiveness.

For some more special/beautiful large tree’s you could try and find out if the following might thrive in your spot/climate

Whithe fragrent flowers up to 12" in size. Saw this tree on holiday. Was amazing!!.
And it’s evergreen.

Has the most amazing leafs. That start of fold in half and incredible tiny. they slowly enlarge, than fold open, and keep enlarging. Verry special growth of the leaves.
Nice fall colours and special flowers. Can get really old and tall.

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Ailanthis altisima. Nothing for squirrels or dear to eat. Grown out in the open it will get a good head on it. will grow to 100 feet tall very rapidly.


Sugar maple

Fraxinus quadrangulata Borer resistant and old time native favorite.

Why didn’t you like the Norway maple? I planted a crimson king last year and am considering a Princeton gold this year. I read that grass tends to not do too well under them but the ones I’ve seen around here doesn’t look bad at all to me. I planted a few red oaks, red maples and a bur oak in the yard also.

I allowed this awful tree to live to try and shade my paw paws for a few years thinking it was the staghorn sumac which does give food to other animals and does good things to the soil. This tree smells awful and does not help the soil and gives life to basically nothing. Suckers everywhere if you mow them you end up leaving little bamboo stakes for your dogs or wifes feet.

It would be awful if someone was using a stand of them and damaging the trees to draw in and create a pest or disease to remove the pox


Ailanthus have an odor that I found very offensive when one was growing in my yard. YMMV. And if you plant one, you will soon have them all over your yard.

I planted a bald cypress as a shade tree in my yard in zone 7 central North Carolina. Not really native this far inland, but still winter hardy. I think they’re beautiful with unique shape and feathery green needles that turn a reddish orange in fall. They are deciduous, but the needles are very small and don’t need raking. And since they don’t keep their needles through the winter, they don’t drop massive branches during ice storms like pine trees do around here. They don’t form knees on well-drained sites, and they grow much more quickly than I expected - a couple of feet per year. They can live for hundreds of years.

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