Cambridge Tree Project
Cambridge Tree Project

Shade Trees

Mature height 25 feet and taller


Reserve trees by email or phone: 



Schedule curbside pickup in Cambridge seven days weekly from 7am to 7pm.


  (Taxodium distichum) Deer Resistant

If you're searching for a beautiful, clean and low maintenance tree keep reading: baldcypress have deciduous needles so small that no raking is required. They also don't drop branches (large or small) onto your lawn. Ornamental attributes include delicate sage green needles (see above) that turn soft orange in autumn (pictured immediately above at Westside Park in Cambridge) and fall to reveal attractive, reddish brown, fissured bark. 19 baldcypress planted throughout Cambridge since 2007 have averaged 17 inches of annual growth in poor soil. One tree planted in better soil on the 300 block of North Street has averaged an impressive 24 inches of annual growth over 15 years. Reaches 60 ft. high but stays narrow to only 25 ft. wide. One of the few trees that thrives in standing water, but also tolerates drier soils. A recently discovered baldcypress in North Carolina was found to be over 2500 years old.

  5 ft. tall: $58



Beech, American 

  (Fagus grandifolia) Native and Deer Resistant

A tree of distinction, beauty and nobility. Completely smooth, silver bark on young and mature trees (both shown above) is a four season attraction. Textured dark green leaves offer a warm tan fall color (also pictured above). Beechnuts are edible and good tasting. Beech is one of the best trees for climbing given its strongly horizontal branching. Happily grows in heavy shade (or sun) but requires deep, undisturbed soil to prosper. Grows 16 inches annually locally. With time American beech become majestic specimens: the state champion near Manitowoc is just over 100 ft. tall.  

We're sorry, but we've sold out of American beech until fall. Please email us if you'd like to be notified when we have them in stock again:



Birch, River 

  (Betula nigra) Native and Deer Resistant

The best birch for suburban lawns given its graceful form, quick 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.

  Single Trunk: 5 ft. tall: $44; $58; 8 ft. tall: $68



Birch ‘Whitespire’ 

  (Betula populifolia)  Deer Resistant

The best white barked birch for suburban lawns. Pure white bark (see photos above) and glossy green leaves that display an attractive 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' birch averaged 14 inches annual growth at the UW Arboretum. Juvenile growth is faster, though, at just over 24 inches annually for two trees planted along Madison Street in Cambridge. 

We're sorry, but we've sold out of 'Whitespire' birch until spring 2023. Please email us if you'd like to be notified when we have them in stock again:



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 we've sold out of yellow birch until fall. Please email us if you'd like to be notified when we have them in stock again:



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.

  1-2 ft. tall seedling: $28

  3-4 ft. tall seedling: 38




  (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.

  8 ft tall: $78

  9 ft tall: $98


Coffeetree, Kentucky

  (Gymnocladus dioicus) Native and Deer Resistant

Fine leaves and airy branching (see top picture, above) provide light shade which encourages the growth of turf grass. Sparse looking when young but with time becomes a bold and picturesque specimen. Exceptional yellow fall color (see middle photo, above). Attractive, highly textured scaly bark (bottom photo above) is a four season attraction. Female trees have large purple seed pods that turn dark brown and persist through winter months. Coffeetrees are also tough: able to grow successfully in virtually all soils except those that are continually wet. 38 trees planted along Cambridge streets in poor soil (gravel, in some cases) are averaging an impressive 20 inches of growth annually. Trees planted in better soil are averaging 28 inches annually over the past decade without supplemental watering. 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 in Sumner Township.

NOTE: Juvenile coffeetrees have no side branching.

  2-3 ft. tall seedling: $28



Elm, American 

  (Ulmus x )

Contemporary elm cultivars offer disease resistance, fast growth and the classic vase shape which historically defined American streets and parks (see top picture, above). They're also durable trees for tough conditions, including the slow draining compacted clays commonly found in newer subdivisions. A nine ft. tall elm cultivar planted in Cambridge on Park Street in 2009 is now over 40 ft. tall (pictured at middle, above). 31 elms planted throughout Cambridge along our streets are averaging 26 inches of annual growth, those planted in better soils average three ft. of growth annually. 

We're sorry, but we've sold out of elm until spring of 2023. Please email us if you'd like to be notified when we have them in stock again:



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  (Gingko biloba x ''Autumn Gold') 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 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 and trees are extremely durable once established. After a slow recovery from transplanting, slow growth commences: 54 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 45 ft. tall and 35 ft. wide. Trees in China are known to be over 1000 years old.

NOTE: 'Autumn Gold' is a male cultivar which does not produce fruit.

 We're sorry, but we've sold out of ginkgos until spring of 2023. Please email us if you'd like to be notified when we have them in stock again:




  (Gleditsia triacanthos 'Skyline') Native and Deer Resistant

Dislike raking leaves? Honeylocust leaves are so small that raking is unnecessary, they simply settle into your lawn, decompose and add nitrogen to your soil. Fall color is bright yellow nearly every year locally (see above). It's also a beautiful and tough tree that performs well in suboptimal soil conditions: wet, dry, compacted, etc. We've planted 36 honeylocust throughout Cambridge and they're averaging 22 inches of growth each year, despite being located in less than ideal conditions. In good soil, with regular watering, honeylocust will average three feet of growth annually. Reaches 60 ft. high and 40 ft. wide.

NOTE: 'Skyline' honeylocust is a fruitless and thornless.

We're sorry, but we've sold out of honeylocust until spring of 2023. Please email us if you'd like to be notified when we have them in stock again:



Horsechestnut, Red Flowering

  (Aesculus x carnea 'Fort McNair')

One of our most requested trees. Reddish pink flowers in May/June that everybody will notice and ask you about. Flowers are a preferred stop for hummingbirds and other important pollinators. No fall color but the medium green, palmately compound leaves look great throughout summer months. A tree planted on the 300 block of North Street (pictured in both photos above) averages 15 inches of growth annually with regular watering. Without regular watering 12 red horsechestnuts average ten inches of growth annually in Cambridge as street and park trees. Expect this tree to reach 30 to 40 ft. high with time.

We're sorry, but we've sold out of red horse chestnut until spring of 2023. Please email us if you'd like to be notified when we have them in stock again:




See 'Ornamentals' tab




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 (Japanese beetles won’t touch this tree) well into autumn when they frequently turn a golden yellow to apricot color (see immediately above, pictured at the Old Red School in Cambridge). 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.   

We're sorry, but we've sold out of katsuratrees until spring of 2023. Please email us if you'd like to be notified when we have them in stock again:


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. Grows well in saturated soils and under normal lawn and garden conditions. 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: $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 top 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. 

  6-9 ft. tall: $68

  11 ft. tall: $128



Maple, Black 

  (Acer nigrum 'Greencolumn') Native

Black maple is a close relative of sugar maple but adapted to warmer and drier growing conditions and less fertile soils, as such it's a great choice for newer neighborhoods where using sugar maple isn't recommend due to their need for better soil and cooler, more protected conditions. Black maple leaves are thick, glossy and lustrous dark green over summer months (see top picture above) turning orange in autumn (see immediately above). We offer 'Greencolumn', a cultivar with proven performance and a narrower form, reaching 65 ft. high and 25 ft. wide. Growth rate is slower, between 8-12 inches annually.

We're sorry, but we've sold out of black maples until spring of 2023. Please email us if you'd like to be notified when we have them in stock again:



Maple, Red 

  (Acer rubrum 'Red Sunset') Native

‘Red Sunset’ maple has many advantages over the readily available 'Autumn Blaze' cultivar: starting off is the exceptional fall color: it reliably produces an electric red/orange (see pics above) that arrives earlier and stays longer. Also features a more formal pyramidal shape; better branch distribution and stronger branch angles that are less likely to break from wind, snow or ice. Grows to 45 ft. high and wide and prospers in most soils including the compacted clays found in new subdivisions. The average annual growth rate of 16 'Red Sunset' street trees planted in Cambridge subdivisions has been ten inches.

We're sorry, but we've sold out of red maples until spring 2023. Please email us if you'd like to be notified when we have them in stock again:



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 some maple species. Features an upright oval form and lustrous, petite dark green leaves (see immediately above). Juvenile growth is robust, up to 24 inches annually in good soil with supplemental water. 

  9 ft. tall: $78



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). Happily grows 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. Can reach 300 years old.

We're sorry, but we've sold out of sugar maple until spring 2023. Please email us if you'd like to be notified when we have them in stock again:



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: 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




See 'Ornamentals' tab




  (Quercus macrocarpa, muehlenbergii, rubra) Native


These oaks are beautiful, easy to grow and longer lived than most landscape trees. 


Bur Oak handles tough conditions better than nearly any other tree: dry, gravelly, rocky or compacted clay soils, occasional flooding, take your pick! An excellent choice for newer subdivisions; 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.

 Sorry we're sold out of bur oak until fall. 


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: $48


Red Oak is one of the few oaks that's shade tolerant; as such it was our "go-to" tree to underplant ash trees we knew would succumb to the emerald ash borer in our community. Growth in shady settings is 16 inches annually based on our seven trees in Cambridge; when planted in sunny locations, however, we're recording over 20 inches of annual growth. Very easy to grow locally. Nice red fall color most years (see picture above, taken at Pleasant and Main Streets). Reaches 60 ft. tall and wide. 

 3-4 ft. tall: $48




  (Carya illinoinensis)

While known as a southern species, we carry pecans sourced from northern locations that perform well in our area. A ten year old tree near Westside Park (pictured at top, above) started producing pecans in the fall of 2018. Pecan trees are self-fertile and our 3-4 ft. tall trees begin producing nuts about six years after planting. Four pecan trees planted locally have managed an impressive 22 inches of annual growth over the past decade in less than ideal soil. They're also tough: able to withstand compacted clay and seasonally wet soils. Reaches 70 ft. tall and 40 ft. wide. We've seen a nice yellow fall color locally about every other year.

Sorry, but we've sold out of Pecans until fall. Email us to request a notification when we have them in stock again: 




  (Diospyros virginiana) Deer Resistant

A tough and interesting tree that's performed well for us here in Cambridge despite its natural range extending no further north than central Illinois. Most prominent feature is handsome and easily recognized blocky bark (see top picture above). Persimmon also have lustrous dark green leaves that emerge purplish red in spring (middle picture above). We've planted 19 throughout Cambridge (most in poor soil conditions) where they average 14 inches of annual growth; also, none of them have died, suggesting cultural tenacity. Persimmon are considered highly shade tolerant. Their bright orange fruits (see bottom picture above) are edible and require male and female trees for pollination. A street tree on Lawn Street in Cambridge began fruiting in 2017, eight years after it was planted. The tallest persimmon in Wisconsin, located in Shorewood, is 45 ft. high.

NOTE: persimmon trees are either male or female: we recommend buying at least three trees to (hopefully) assure a fruit set.

 We're sorry, but we've sold out of persimmon until spring of 2023. Please email us if you'd like to be notified when we have them in stock again:



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, 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.

We're sorry, but we've sold out of dawnredwood until spring of 2023. Please email us if you'd like to be notified when we have them in stock again:




  (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 ft. tall: $88




  (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 15 years ago on the 200 block of North Street in Cambridge; that tree is now 55 ft. tall and has averaged of 43 inches of growth annually. 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 a year round attraction. Mature size is massive, up to 100 ft. tall and wide.

  5 ft. tall seedling: $38




  (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.

  6 ft. tall: 'Emerald City': $78




  (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.

  5-6 ft. tall: $68



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


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