Trees In Parking Lots: Tree Selection And Other Considerations

Trees are very useful in parking lots. In addition to adding beauty to the landscape, trees benefit customers by providing landmarks for navigation and shade for vehicles. However, sometimes choosing the best trees for life in a parking lot and positioning them properly can be a challenge. The following tips will help you landscape your business parking lot with trees to ensure that your parking lot will be hospitable to your business's guests.

Factors to Consider When Choosing a Tree

  • Trees must be fitted to the space provided. Trees need room to spread their roots. They also do best when given adequate soil surface area for water absorption purposes. Your parking lot may be designed with some smaller and larger median strips, based on the layout. Larger canopy trees should be planted in larger median strips, and smaller, more compact trees should occupy the smaller median strips.
  • Parking lot trees must be tolerant of harsh conditions. Parking lots provide unfavorable conditions for tree growth throughout the year. Salt runoff in winter, heat in summer, lack of regular watering and lack of maintenance will be the death of an improperly chosen tree. In addition, construction debris dumped in soil can turn the soil alkaline. Many trees don't grow well in alkaline soil because alkalinity inhibits their ability to take in nutrients. If construction debris is found in the parking lot soil, the trees chosen to grow there should be tolerant of alkalinity.

Consider Some of These Tough Varieties of Trees for Your Parking Lot

Below are some tough trees that can thrive in parking lots:

  • Red maple is a large-canopy, fast-growing tree that is tolerant of a variety of conditions (including dry periods). This tree provides dense shade throughout the growing season and ornamental beauty in fall when its leaves turn bright red.
  • Japanese Zelkova can grow in alkaline soils and is therefore appropriate for inner median strips where construction debris may found. This tree is often used in urban locations because of its tolerance of alkaline soils and because it offers dense shade.

If these choices don't appeal to you, work with your commercial landscaper to produce a list of trees that are favorable for your parking lot. Often native trees can make good parking lot trees because their watering needs match the rainfall that's typical for the area. Your commercial landscaper can also have your soil tested for alkalinity, salt and other unfavorable conditions. Having this information can help your commercial landscaper pick the right trees for your needs. Contact a company like Boyer WH to get started.