Cambridge Tree Project
Cambridge Tree Project

Shade Trees

Mature height 25 feet and taller

 

Reserve trees by email or phone:   info@cambridgetreeproject.org 

 608-513-1977

 

Schedule curbside pickup in Cambridge seven days weekly  beginning early April 2023.

Baldcypress 

  (Taxodium distichum) Deer Resistant

Baldcypress have deciduous leaves so small that no raking is required. Their attractive leaves are sage green over summer months (see middle picture, above) and turn to soft orange in autumn (also pictured immediately above, taken at Westside Park in Cambridge). 19 baldcypress planted throughout Cambridge since 2007 have never suffered from cold damage and average 16 inches of annual growth, mostly in poor soils where growth rates are suppressed. A baldcypress planted in better soil on the 300 block of North Street has averaged an impressive 23 inches of annual growth over 16 years. Reaches 60 ft. high but stays narrow to only 25 ft. wide. One of the few trees that will thrive in standing water but also succeeds in drier soils. A recently discovered baldcypress in North Carolina was found to be over 2500 years old.  

  5-6 ft. tall premium grade: $58

 

 

Birch, River 

  (Betula nigra) Native and Deer Resistant

The best birch for suburban lawns: graceful form, fast growth, and tough disposition. Ornamental features include exfoliating salmon/cream colored bark (pictured immediately above) and attractive clear yellow fall color. Thrives anywhere, including the poorly drained, compacted clays commonly found in recently developed subdivisions. 18 river birch planted throughout Cambridge have averaged 30 inches of annual growth without supplemental watering, making it one of the fastest growing street trees in our village.

   Multiple Trunks: 5-6 ft. tall premium grade: $68

   Single Trunk: 4 ft. tall seedling: $38

   Single Trunk: 8-9 ft. tall seedling: $78

 

 

Birch ‘Whitespire’ 

  (Betula populifolia)  Deer Resistant

'Whitespire' is the only white barked birch with enough moxie to succeed in suburban lawns in the Madison area, where heat and wind exert too much stress on our native paper birch. Ornamental features include attractive pure white bark (see photos above) and glossy green leaves that turn a respectable yellow in fall. Grows to 30-40 ft. high with a dominant central leader and narrow habit, to around 20 ft. wide. Over 30 years 'Whitespire' averaged 14 inches annual growth at the UW Arboretum. Juvenile growth is faster, however, at just over 24 inches annually for two trees planted along Madison Street in Cambridge.

  Multiple Trunks: 5-6 ft. tall premium grade: $68

  Multiple Trunks: 6-7 ft. tall premium grade: $78

 

Birch, Yellow 

  (Betula alleghaniensis) Native and Deer Resistant

A hard to find top-tier shade tree featuring beautiful shiny golden bark and exceptional clear yellow fall color (both pictured above). Yellow birch is also one of the few birch species known to be shade tolerant. Features the essence of wintergreen in its twigs, which were historically distilled to flavor food products. This is the largest of our native birches (60 ft. high) and is logged for flooring, trim and furniture. Two yellow birches planted on Cambridge school grounds in 2012 average 15 inches of new growth each year. Grows in sun or shade and prefers cool and moist conditions.

  We're sorry, but our spring yellow birch stock has already sold out. Please email us if you'd like to be notified when we have them in stock again: info@cambridgetreeproject.org

 

 

Buckeye, Ohio 

  (Aesculus glabra) 

Buckeyes are great choices for shady areas given their adaptation to life in the forest understory. Palmately compound leaves (see pictures above) stand out among other trees. Attractive yellow flowers (also pictured above) arrive in June and in fall buckeye nuts appear only to be quickly swiped by local squirrel packs. Leaves offer a nice pumpkin orange fall color while deeper reds appear some years (pictured at top, above). Growth rate is slow: our 13 street and park Ohio buckeyes average only ten inches annually. Reaches 40 ft. tall and wide.

  2-3 ft. tall seedling: $38

 

 

Catalpa 

  (Catalpa speciosa) Deer Resistant

Catalpa's orchid-like flowers are said to be the most beautiful of all American flowering trees (see photo above). Massive leaves (to 12 inches) lend a tropical appearance and provide a pleasant medium green color over summer months. Long bean-shaped seed pods arrive in about ten years. Incredibly fast growing: 25 inches annually taking measurements from our 18 street and park trees in Cambridge. Grows nearly anywhere including compacted clay soils. With time a very large tree: one in Wauwatosa is 106 ft. high.

NOTE: Juvenile catalpas have no side branching.

  7-8 ft. tall potted: $98

 

 

Coffeetree, Kentucky

  (Gymnocladus dioicus) Native and Deer Resistant

Coffeetree combines elegance and toughness so well that they're now one of the most popular urban trees planted in our area. Sparse looking when young, but with time they become a highly picturesque specimens (see top pic, above). Exceptional yellow fall color (middle photo, above) appears nearly every year locally, and the attractive, highly textured scaly bark (bottom photo) is a four-season attraction. Female trees have large purple seed pods that turn dark brown and persist through winter months. Coffeetrees succeed in all soils except those that are continually wet. 38 of them planted along Cambridge streets in poor soil (gravel, in some cases) average an impressive 20 inches of growth annually. Trees planted in better soil will add between two and three ft. of annual growth. Reaches 50 ft. tall and 40 ft. wide in the home landscape. The second tallest coffeetree in America (112 ft.) is found just south of Cambridge near Lake Koshkonong.

 NOTE: Juvenile coffeetrees have no side branching.

  2-3 ft. tall seedling: $28

 

 

Elm, American 

  (Ulmus x  'St. Croix')

Contemporary elm cultivars offer disease resistance, fast growth and the classic vase shape which historically defined American streets and parks (see top picture, above). We offer 'St. Croix,' selected in Minnesota for exceptional disease resistance, a picturesque, open habit, rapid growth, and attractive yellow fall color. American elms are among the most durable trees for tough conditions, including the slow draining compacted clays so commonly found in newer subdivisions. Their only requirement for success is a sunny location. A nine ft. tall elm cultivar planted in Cambridge on Park Street in 2009 is now over 40 ft. tall (pictured immediately above). 34 elm cultivars planted throughout Cambridge along our streets average 26 inches of annual growth, those planted in better soils average three ft. of growth annually. 

  6-7 ft. tall 'St. Croix' premium grade: $78

 

Gift Certificates

  - Mother's Day, Birthdays, House Warming!

  - Email us for details: info@CambridgeTreeProject.org

 

 

Ginkgo 

  (Gingko biloba x 'Autumn Gold' and 'Magyar') Deer Resistant

Ginkgos feature the most distinctive leaf shape (pictured above) of any deciduous tree in our area. They also consistently display bright yellow fall color and during most years nearly all leaves drop within 24 hours in autumn, reducing your fall raking hassle considerably. Known to be one of the most trouble-free trees available: no insect or disease issues to worry about and trees are extremely durable once established: many trees in China are known to be over 1000 years old and the oldest is thought to be 3500! After a slow recovery from transplanting, slow growth commences: 65 ginkgos planted throughout Cambridge average only eight inches of growth annually. Growth to 15 inches annually can be achieved with regular watering and a little luck. Reaches 50 ft. tall and 30 ft. wide. 

NOTE: 'Autumn Gold' and 'Magyar' ginkos are male cultivars which don't produce fruit.

 5-6 ft. tall branched seedling: $88

 

 

Horsechestnut, Red Flowering

  See 'Ornamentals' tab above

 

Ironwood 

  See 'Ornamentals' tab above

 

 

 

Katsura Tree 

  (Cercidyphyllum japonica)

Considered by tree snobs to be one of the most beautiful and desirable specimen trees. Extremely long lived, low maintenance and attractive in all seasons. Leaves have an interesting round shape that flicker in the wind throughout summer, remaining disease free well into autumn when they frequently turn a golden yellow to apricot color (see immediately above, pictured at the Old Red School in Cambridge). Their only liability is a need for good garden soil and regular watering when young. A katsura growing in the Nakoma neighborhood in Madison is 65 ft. high. We're recording 15 inches of annual growth from the 21 katsuras planted throughout Cambridge, mostly in shady conditions, where growth rates are suppressed. Those planted in sunny locations have averaged 20 inches annually over the past ten years.   

Due to extermeme heat in the Pacific Northwest last summer we weren't able to source katsuratree this year. Please email us if you'd like to be notified when we have them in stock again: info@cambridgetreeproject.org

 

Larch, American (Tamarack)

  (Larix laricina) Native and Deer Resistant

A deciduous conifer that drops its needles every fall after displaying golden yellow fall color (see top pic above). Decorative small cones (to one inch) are violet colored when young (see photo directly above) before turning light brown. Easy to grow locally in saturated soils or under normal lawn and garden conditions. Though far more common in northern Wisconsin, glacial remnant tamarack populations can be found in the Madison area, including swamps on the south end of Rock Lake near Lake Mills. Fast growing when young, up to 24 inches annually on the eight street trees here in Cambridge. Reaches 50 ft. tall and only 20 ft. wide.

   4 ft tall (potted): $48

 

 

London Planetree 

  (Platanus x 'Exclamation')

London Planetree is a hybrid of our native sycamore and the oriental plane tree and is commonly cultivated in American and European cities because it grows so well under stressful, urban conditions. Shown at above is the familiar camo-themed bark: a mosaic of tan, brown and white. A very fast-growing tree: 51 London planes planted throughout Cambridge in compacted clay and gravel soils average 30 inches of growth annually without supplemental watering. Reaches 60 ft. high with time. The cultivar we offer ('Exclamation') was developed by Chicagoland Grows and is well suited to our area provided that it's planted in good garden soil with plenty of sun.

  5-6 ft. tall conservation grade seedling: $38

  11 ft. tall premium grade (potted): $128

 

 

Maple, Red 

  (Acer rubrum 'Redpointe') Native

‘Redpointe’ is fast becoming the most popular red maple cultivar. It provides faster initial growth and is more tolerant of poor soil conditions (including the compacted clays found in recently developed subdivisions) than other red maples. It also features a more formal, upright branching pattern (see top picture, above) and stronger branch angles that hold up better to wind, ice, and snow loads. Fall color is an exceptional, long lasting bright red (see immediately above). Grows to 45 ft. high by 30 ft. wide at 18  to 24 inches annually.

 7-8 ft. tall premium grade: $88

 

Maple 'Rugged Ridge'

  (Acer miyabei 'Rugged Ridge')

Known for its tough disposition, 'Rugged Ridge' maple also offers attractive yellow fall color and corky ornamental bark (both pictured above). A great choice for newly constructed homes where compacted soils limit the use of many other maple species. Features an upright oval form and lustrous, petite dark green leaves (see immediately above) that are easier to rake. Juvenile growth is robust, up to 24 inches annually in good soil with supplemental water. 

  9-10 ft. tall premium grade: $88

 

 

Maple, Sugar 

  (Acer saccharum 'Fall Fiesta') Native

'Fall Fiesta' is an improved sugar maple selection featuring faster initial growth and glossy, lustrous leaves that turn yellow, orange, or red in fall depending on weather conditions (see immediately above). This tree prospers in heavy shade or sun, but requires deep topsoil to prosper. Not a good choice for newer neighborhoods given its sensitivity to thin clay soils and open, exposed conditions; for those areas consider 'Rugged Ridge' maple (highlighted immediately above) to capture the ornamental attributes of sugar maple with better soil adaptability. Matures to 50 ft. tall and wide. Sugar maples are our longest lived native maples and can reach 300 years old. 

  7-8 ft. tall premium grade: $78

  9-10 ft. tall premium grade: $88

 

Mulberry, Red 

  (Moris rubra) Native

An increasingly uncommon native that shouldn't be confused with the invasive white mulberry. Large, flavorful fruits are edible, messy, and highly valued by many bird species. Fruit production occurs within ten years of planting red mulberry. Large dark green leaves in various shapes that, at best, turn an understated yellow in fall. Reaches 40 ft. tall in landscape conditions with an open habit, living for 125 years. Grayish-brown ridged and furrowed bark. Requires good garden soil and will grow in sun or light shade.

NOTE: most mulberry trees are either male or female, so we recommend buying at least three trees to (hopefully) assure a fruit set. In some cases, mulberries are self-fertile, with male and female flowers on different branches of the same tree.

  5 ft. tall seedling: $44

 

 

Musclewood 

See 'Ornamentals' tab

 

 

Oaks 

  (Quercus bicolor, macrocarpa, muehlenbergii) Native

 

Oaks are majestically beautiful, easy to grow and longer lived than most landscape trees. Known as nature's cafeteria, they support more life-forms than any other tree in North America. 

 

Bur Oak handles tough conditions better than nearly any other tree: dry, gravelly, rocky, or compacted clay soils, occasional flooding, wind-exposed, take your pick! An excellent choice for newer subdivisions; where even under terrible soil conditions bur oaks average eight inches of annual growth locally. In better soil we've found bur oaks will grow 20 inches annually within the first five years of planting. With time a massive tree, up to 75 ft. tall and wide.

 6-7 ft. tall potted: $88

 

Chinkapin Oak is a tough and fast growing native: 26 trees planted throughout Cambridge average an impressive 25 inches of annual growth. Trees located in better soils average 30 inches of growth each year. They also handle tough conditions well and are great choices for newer homes where soil conditions preclude the use of so many species. Mature height is smaller for an oak, commonly 40 ft. tall and 50 ft. wide. 

  3-4 ft. tall potted: $48

 

Swamp White Oak has become a popular urban tree due to its renown tolerance of poor soils, both wet and dry. Offers glossy, dark green leaves and attractively shaggy bark. Swamp white oak leaves are known to be among the best sound insulators of any deciduous tree, given their combined glossy upper surface (sound reflection) and fuzzy underside (absorption). Growth rate of 17 swamp white oak street trees is 16 inches annually. Those planted in better soils, when regularly mulched and watered, grow between two and three ft. annually as juveniles. Easy to grow in any sunny setting.

  6-7 ft. tall premium grade: $78

 

 

Redwood, Dawn 

  (Metasequoia glyptostroboides) Deer Resistant

A beautifully exotic deciduous conifer similar to baldcypress but faster growing locally: our 16 trees in Cambridge average 20 inches of annual growth without supplemental watering; in better soils we've noted between two and three ft. of growth annually. Interestingly attractive cones (pictured immediately above) are only one inch across, which is very small for a conifer. Handsome reddish brown, fissured bark provides all season appeal (see middle photo above). Withstands wet soil but also performs well in drier spots. Reaches 70 ft. tall but stays narrow to only 25 ft. wide.

  6-7 ft. tall premium grade: $78

 

 

Sweetgum 

  (Liquidambar styraciflua x 'Moraine') Deer Resistant

The best fall color festival in Cambridge. Sweetgum leaves from the same tree pick a brilliant color (crimson, purple or yellow) and really run with it (see photo at top, above, taken on Drumlin Trail in Cambridge). We offer 'Moraine', a cultivar which readily withstands our coldest winters and provides lustrous green leaves throughout summer (see middle picture above). We’re seeing annual growth of 18 inches on the 20 sweetgums planted throughout Cambridge. Tolerant of wet areas and poor soils.

  6-7 ft. tall premium grade (potted): $98

 

 

Sycamore 

  (Platanus occidentalis) Native and Deer Resistant

No quality shade tree is tougher or faster growing than a sycamore. To be sure, the fastest growing tree we've ever measured in our tree trials (pictured at top, above) is a sycamore planted in 2006 on the 200 block of North Street in Cambridge; that tree is now 55 ft. tall and averaged of 43 inches of growth annually over its first 15 years. Overall, 25 sycamores located in poor soils throughout Cambridge average 29 inches of annual growth without supplemental watering. They happily grow in any sunny setting, tolerating wet, dry, clay and even gravel soils and rarely need formative pruning due to a nicely defined central leader and measured lateral branching. Ornamental bark (pictured immediately above) is an all-season attraction. Their mature size is massive, up to 100 ft. tall and wide.  

  5 ft. tall seedling: $38

  7-8 ft. tall seedling 'Northern Advance': $68

 

 

Tuliptree 

  (Liriodendron tulipifera x 'Emerald City') Deer Resistant

Fast growing, spring flowering, majestic member of the magnolia family. Flowers (pictured at top, above) arrive within ten years of planting and do look just like tulips. Leaves (pictured in middle of set, above) have the unique tulip profile and remain disease free (Japanese beetles won’t touch this tree) well into autumn when they consistently display vivid yellow color locally. 19 tuliptrees planted as street trees in Cambridge have averaged 24 inches of annual growth over the past decade; trees planted in residential lawns throughout our village are growing up to 36 inches annually (see picture immediately above, taken of a 15 year old tuliptree on the 300 block of North Street). Not a good choice for areas with poor soil, especially new subdivisions. A large tree with time, reaching 80 ft. tall and 40 ft. wide. We offer the cultivar 'Emerald City' which has glossy leaves and improved cold hardiness.

  5-6 ft. tall branched seedling: $48

 

 

 

Tupelo 

  (Nyssa sylvatica) Deer Resistant

Exceptionally vivid red fall color on glossy leaves is nearly impossible to beat on a clear fall day. Pictured immediately above is a celebrated specimen growing next to the McKay Center at the UW Arboretum: note the unique horizontal branching pattern. Will grow in poorly drained areas given its tolerance of anaerobic soils. Growth of our eight tupelo trees in Cambridge has been slow, at 12 inches annually. Reaches 30 ft. tall and wide locally. Native only to Kenosha County in Wisconsin, but fully hardy in our area.

  We're sorry, but we've already sold out of our spring stock of Tupelo trees.

  Please email us if you'd like to be notified when we have them in stock again: info@cambridgetreeproject.org

 

 

Proceeds from our online tree sales have gifted and established over 1000 additional living trees in Cambridge since 2006

 

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Contact us: info@cambridgetreeproject.org 608 513 1977