Cambridge Tree Project
Cambridge Tree Project

Shade trees available at our 2018 Saturday Tree Sales!                      April 21, 28                              May 5, 12

Baldcypress (Taxodium distichum)

A tree of southern swamps that also happens to prosper in our area…baldcypress trees planted throughout Cambridge in 2007 have averaged 13 inches of annual growth and withstood winter temperatures as low as 20 degrees below zero…a tree planted in good soil and receiving supplemental watering on the 300 block of North St has averaged 25 inches of annual growth…with time, baldcypress become a large uniformly pyramidal tree reaching 60 feet high…delicate green needles turn a soft orange in autumn and fall from the tree (similar to our native tamarack trees) revealing attractive, reddish brown bark...baldcypress are also long lived, some trees are known to be over 1000 years old. 2-4' tall $38-48



Beech, American (Fagus grandifolia)

A tree of great beauty which many people claim as their favorite...distinctive smooth silvery bark (see picture immediately above)...attractive dark green leaves that turn golden bronze in the fall…one of the best trees for climbing given the strongly horizontal branching pattern…an added bonus: beechnuts are edible and good tasting…American beech trees require good soil and grow slowly but with time they become majestic specimens: the current Wisconsin state champion near Manitowoc is just over 100 feet tall. 4' tall $68




Birch, River (Betula nigra)

The best all-around native birch for suburban lawns...grows in poor soils including those that are seasonally wet...ornamental features include (pictured above) exfoliating salmon and cream colored bark and a beautiful clear yellow fall color...six street trees planted locally are averaging 19 inches of annual growth without supplemental watering. 2-3' tall multi stem $38; 8-9' tall single stem $78


Birch ‘Whitespire’ (Betula platyphllla)  

The best white-barked birch for suburban lawns…pure white bark and glossy green leaves that turn yellow in fall…grows to 40-50 feet tall with a dominant central leader and narrow habit, to around 15 feet wide…over 30 years this tree averaged 14 inches of annual growth at the UW Arboretum. 2-3' tall multi-stem $38



Buckeye, Ohio, Red and Yellow (Aesculus glabra, flava and pavia) 

Buckeyes are great choices for areas in your yard with a lot of shade as they're adapted to growth in the forest understory...they also feature unusual palmately compound leaves (Ohio buckeye pictured above) that get arrive in June and in fall buckeye nuts appear only to be quickly swiped by local squirrel packs...we've noticed that annual growth rates are on the slower side: Ohio averages only nine inches and yellow produces 12 inches growth; we have a red buckeye in our front lawn that has averaged 17 inches of annual growth with regular watering...palmately-compound leaves on all buckeyes look great during the summer months and generally produce a nice pumpkin orange fall color…Yellow buckeye will grow 60 feet tall or more with age whereas Ohio is usually shorter than that; red buckeyes are great patio trees as they reach only 10-15 feet tall. Ohio buckeye 7-8' tall $118; Yellow buckeye 2-3’ tall $38; Red Buckeye 2' tall $38; 3-4' tall $68




Catalpa (Catalpa speciosa)

Fast growing (26 inches annually locally) white flowering tree that grows nearly anywhere including dry and compacted soils...large leaves (up to 12 inches) have a pleasant medium green color during the summer months…the white flowers, at close inspection, are said to be the most beautiful of all American flowering trees. 3-5' tall $38-48


Coffeetree, Kentucky (Gymnocladus dioicus)

A rare and beautiful (fall color pictured above) native that is one tough tree: able to grow successfully in virtually any soil except those that are consistently wet...20 trees planted along Cambridge streets in poor soil (gravel, in some cases) are averaging 10 inches annually...a tree planted in better soil near the Methodist church on Water Street has averaged 24 inches annually over the past eight years...sparse looking when young but with age becomes a beautiful  tree...interesting blueish green leaves produce a nice yellow fall color...attractive textured bark...on female trees large purple seed pods turn dark brown in the fall and persist through winter...similar to honey locust, coffeetree's fine leaves provide a light shade under which grass grows nicely...this tree is late to leaf out in spring. 4-5' tall $48; 2-3' tall $38


Crabtree: see 'Ornamentals' tab at top of page


Dogwood, Pagoda see 'Ornamentals' tab



Ginkgo (Gingko biloba x 'Princeton Sentry')

A favorite of Frank Lloyd Wright, ginkgo trees feature what might be the most distinctive leaf (pictured above) of any deciduous tree: they're shaped like a fan; they also feature an exceptional clear-yellow fall color and...nearly all of them fall within a 24 hour time period in the autumn, reducing the fall rake-up hassle considerably…regarded as one of the most trouble-free trees available: no insect or disease issues and trees are extremely hardy once established…growth is slow: 30 trees planted throughout Cambridge are averaging only five inches of annual growth...ten inches annual growth has been noted with regular watering…trees in China are known to be over 1,000 years old. 3-4' tall  ‘Princeton Sentry’ (male cultivar) $68


Hawthorn: White and Scarlet Flowering      

see 'Ornamentals' tab

Hornbeam, American (Carpinus vinginiana)

A fine-textured understory tree with smooth silver bark similar to American beech...excellent choice for patios and in front of larger trees as it reaches only 20 feet tall and wide under landscape conditions…happily grows in sun or complete shade...we've recorded reasonably fast initial growth of the eight younger hornbeams planted throughout Cambridge: 18 inches annually...vibrant red to orange fall color...native along rivers and streams...also known as "musclewood" 2-3' tall $38

Horsechestnut (Aesculus hippocastanum)

The European cousin of our domestic buckeye trees are classic white-flowering shade trees that you can find in most older downtown areas...interesting palmately-compound leaves and buckeye nuts which fascinate kids and squirrels...we also carry a seedless version, the 'Baumann' horsechestnut...horsechestnut seedlings have averaged an impressive 17 inches of growth annually here in Cambridge. 6'-7' tall 'Baumann' seedless $128; 2-3’ tall $38


Horsechestnut, Red Flowering

(Aesculus x carnea 'Ft McNair')

One of our most-requested trees...reddish-pink flowers in May/June that everybody will notice and ask you fall color to speak of but the leaves look great throughout the summer...a tree planted on the 300 block of North St is averaging over 14 inches of growth annually with regular watering...this tree will eventually reach 30-40 feet. SOLD OUT for 2018 see Red Buckeye above for similar appearance

Katsura Tree (Cercidyphyllum japonica)

Considered by tree snobs to be one of the most beautiful and desirable specimen trees...long-lived, low maintenance and attractive in all seasons...leaves have an interesting round shape that flickers in the wind throughout summer, remaining disease free (Japanese beetles won’t touch this tree) well into autumn when they turn a nice amber-orange color...exceptional resistance to insects and diseases...only liability is a need for regular watering when young...a katsuratree growing in the Nakoma neighborhood in Madison is 65 feet tall...we are seeing 18 inches annual growth from the ten katsuratrees planted throughout Cambridge, in both sun and shade. 3-4' tall $38


Larch (Tamarack) (Larix laricina and Larix decidua)

We will offer two larches this year: American and European...Larches are deciduous conifers that drop their needles every year in the fall after a reliably brilliant golden yellow fall color...will grow in wet soils. 2' tall European larch $28; 3' tall American larch $38



London Planetree (Platanus x 'Exclamation')

Hybrid of our native sycamore and the oriental plane tree...common in European and Eastern American cities because it grows well in stressed, urban conditions...shown above is the familiar bark, as mosaic of tan, brown and white...a very fast growing tree: 16 London planes planted throughout Cambridge in compacted clay/gravel/garbage soil are averaging 28 inches of growth annually...tough and trouble free...reaches 60 feet with time...this particular cultivar was developed by 'Chicagoland Grows' and is well-suited to our area 9' tall $108; 3-4' tall $48


Magnolias see 'Ornamentals' tab


Maple, Red (Acer x 'Sienna Glen') 

A Sienna Glen red maple was planted near the front parking lot of the Cambridge High School in 2013 and has averaged an impressive 29 inches of annual growth...has also displayed consistently vibrant orange/red fall color...grows to 40 feet tall and wide...prospers in virtually any soils including the compacted clays found in new subdivisions. 6' tall $78

Maple, Hedge (Acer campestre x 'Jade Patina')

Durable small maple grows to 25 feet tall and then stops...small maple-styled leaves have excellent dark green summer color but reach a dull yellow in the fall...a good choice for subdivisions as it withstands poor soils and hot, dry conditions...interesting corky bark on smaller branches 7-8' tall $78 


Maple, Japanese see 'Ornamentals' tab at top of page

Oak: Red, Bur, Shingle and Chinkapin (various Quercus)

All of these oaks are beautiful and easy to grow. Red oak is our go-to tree to plant in the shade of larger trees locally, though it won't grow as fast in that setting (8 inches annually on average for our seven trees)...when planted in the sun we're recording 18 inches of annual growth...very easy to grow and a nice red fall color Bur Oak handles tough conditions better than nearly any other tree: wet, dry, compacted, gravel, rocky, clay soils, take your pick! excellent choice for newer subdivisions...even under terrible conditions bur oaks average 8 inches of annual growth locally. Chinkapin Oak is the fastest growing oak we offer; nine trees planted throughout Cambridge are averaging 28 inches of growth annually without supplemental watering...features serrated leaves and edible acorns. Shingle Oak once grew as far north as Rock County and has interesting lustrous leaves like a magnolia (no lobes)...a shingle oak planted nine years ago on the 300 block of North St has averaged a respectible 18 inches of annual growth. 2-4' tall $38


Redbud, Eastern see 'Ornamentals' tab at top of page


Sassafras (Sassafras albidum)

All parts of this tree are interesting and aromatic...the roots were once used to make root beer and are still used to make tea...the leaves, pictured above, come in four shapes (ghost, football and both left and right mittens) all of which feature exceptional orange and red fall color...we planted a sassafras in our front lawn six years ago and it's grown 23 inches annually with regular watering...this tree needs full sun and good soil to thrive. 4-5' tall $48

Serviceberry see 'Ornamentals' tab at top of page



Sweet Gum: (Liquidambar styraciflua)

The best fall festival of colors of any tree in Cambridge...sweetgum leaves from the same tree pick a brilliant color and really run with it...keep in mind that each of the above leaves were part of the same tree...this year we are offering the cultivar 'Rontindiloba' which has rounded leaves that really get noticed...also, the cultivar has no seed pods which are objectionable to some...we’re seeing annual growth of 14 inches on the eight sweet gums planted throughout Cambridge…tolerant of wet areas, poor soils and constricted areas with limited room for root expansion. 4' tall 'Rotundiloba' $68

Sycamore: (Platanus occidentalis)

12 sycamores were planted in lousy soil throughout Cambridge in 2007 and they have proven to be one fast growing tree: averaging 28 inches of growth annually without supplemental watering...the fastest growing tree we've ever measured in Cambridge, located on the 200 block of North Street, is now 40 feet tall and has averaged 48 inches of growth other tree we have planted in Cambridge has achieved this level of growth...drought tolerant and tough, sycamores will grow in virtually any setting: wet, dry, clay, gravel...we haven't lost a single sycamore tree which is really saying something given the conditions we plant them in...they also rarely need pruning due to nicely defined central leader. 4-5' tall $58


(Liriodendron tulipifera)

Fast-growing, spring flowering, majestic member of the magnolia family...street trees planted by the Cambridge Tree Project are averaging 15 inches of annual growth...trees that have been planted in residential lawns throughout Cambridge are growing more than 24 inches annually...leaves have the interesting tulip shape and remain disease free (Japanese beetles won’t touch this tree) well into autumn when they turn an excellent yellow color...not a good choice for areas with poor soil, especially new subdivisions 4-5' $68

Profits go directly toward planting trees in Cambridge and Rockdale common areas.

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