A healthy mature tree is a valuable addition to any landscape. The best trees to plant will always be native trees that are tolerant of weather conditions and certain pests in their native range. Although Texas has many native trees, there are a few varieties that stand out more than others when it comes to having the ability to add value to the landscape
Texas native oak trees add value to the landscape because of their ability to grow to a large size and create much-needed shade. They are tolerant of wide fluctuations in moisture levels and temperatures. The strong limbs withstand strong Texas winds and ice storms. The native Texas Live Oak and Chinquapin Oak are semi-evergreen, with Water Oaks, Pin Oaks, Post Oaks and Willow Oaks being deciduous. The graceful Bur Oak is an outstanding deciduous landscape tree that produces huge acorns and leaves as long as 8 inches. Oak trees grow in every region of Texas.
The pecan tree is the State Tree of Texas. There are many varieties available for planting in the landscape, such as the Desirable, Choctaw and Sioux varieties. They have the added attraction of producing edible nuts. Pecan trees should not be planted near a driveway or structure, as they produce a sticky sap during the heat of the summer. However, even with that minor drawback, a big healthy pecan tree adds value to the landscape in Texas. They are adaptable in all regions of the state.
Pine Trees grow very tall and straight and the wood is often used for lumber and pulpwood. However, many people like the long pine needles and stately shape of a tall pine. All varieties are evergreen and create dense shade. The tallest pine trees varieties such as the Loblolly, Long Leaf and Slash Pine grow in the eastern half of the state. In the western half of the state, the Eldarica or Afghan pine is a good choice for a landscape tree, although they do not reach the same height as the pine trees of East Texas. Pine trees of East Texas prefer deep acidic soils and consistent moisture, although they will tolerate some drought. Because of their immense size, it is not recommended that they be placed closer than 50 feet from a structure. The smaller pines of West Texas tolerate alkaline soils and drought better than the East Texas varieties.