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Thread: Buying mature trees, advice please!

  1. #1
    Grand Master
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    Buying mature trees, advice please!

    OK, gardening has never been my thing, I`ve been lucky because both my 1st and current wives have been keen gardeners so apart from helping with donkey work I`ve had limited involvement.

    We now own a property with a large garden but very little in it apart from a lawn that's in poor condition. I`d like to plant a couple of trees, I like trees, but at 63 I don`t fancy the option of waiting 20+ years for one to grow. Within reason cost is secondary, I`d like to look down the garden and see a couple of nice trees, nothing huge but something more like a tree than a bush. The soil is heavy and doesn`t drain well, typical of the area. Another constraint is the gap between house and garage (4feet) which could limit what we can get into the garden.

    All suggestions welcome. Mrs W is trying to find a landscape gardener locally who may be able to help but most seem to like building patios and not much else!

  2. #2
    Master
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    There are some nurseries around that sell mature trees and bushes for that instant wow factor.
    Trying to remember what one was called. They will be able to give you some good advice and at least deliver to the right part of the garden. Canít recall if they will plant it for you though.

    Think it was this place - https://www.thebiggreenplantcentre.co.uk/
    Last edited by bambam; 5th March 2021 at 21:29.

  3. #3
    Craftsman
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    Barcham Trees are a good starting point to see whatís available.

  4. #4
    Grand Master Chris_in_the_UK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by walkerwek1958 View Post
    OK, gardening has never been my thing, I`ve been lucky because both my 1st and current wives have been keen gardeners so apart from helping with donkey work I`ve had limited involvement.

    We now own a property with a large garden but very little in it apart from a lawn that's in poor condition. I`d like to plant a couple of trees, I like trees, but at 63 I don`t fancy the option of waiting 20+ years for one to grow. Within reason cost is secondary, I`d like to look down the garden and see a couple of nice trees, nothing huge but something more like a tree than a bush. The soil is heavy and doesn`t drain well, typical of the area. Another constraint is the gap between house and garage (4feet) which could limit what we can get into the garden.

    All suggestions welcome. Mrs W is trying to find a landscape gardener locally who may be able to help but most seem to like building patios and not much else!
    Should be able to get a mini-digger through the gap Paul which will help when you need to transplant what you chose.
    When you look long into an abyss, the abyss looks long into you.........

  5. #5
    Craftsman
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    We had a couple of fairly big trees delivered last year from a Yorkshire company called ĎOrnamental Treesí. Great customer service. These were 5m high but reasonably easy to move and didnít need mechanical handling.
    Youíd probably need some advice/ research into what will prosper in your particular circumstances- we went for a Liquidamber and a Rowan.

  6. #6
    Master
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    Hilliers grow them near us.

  7. #7
    Master yumma's Avatar
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    Personally I would err towards fruit trees. Cherry is lovely with its red bark and beautiful blossom, plus Apple, Pear and Plum. Or away from Fruit, Silver Birch or even a proper Willow tree. Serious hardwoods are lovely, such as Oak, Ash and Elm, but they are centuries in the making. Thereís a lot to be said for evergreens too. A Bay is nice; plus handy for your cooking, also some Scandinavian pines/firs.

  8. #8
    Master Kirk280's Avatar
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    I have a 60ft Oak tree in the front driveway you are welcome to have mate. Just sort out the TPO and transport costs and Iíll donate it to you no worries.

    Iíll even throw in a free squirrel!

  9. #9
    Grand Master JasonM's Avatar
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    Acers are nice looking too.
    Cheers..
    Jase

  10. #10
    Master Wolfie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kirk280 View Post
    I have a 60ft Oak tree in the front driveway you are welcome to have mate. Just sort out the TPO and transport costs and Iíll donate it to you no worries.

    Iíll even throw in a free squirrel!
    Iíll pay you £100 to take away a giant silver birch (35ft?)Ö. Itís about to hit some telephone poles in my front garden

    Quote Originally Posted by JasonM View Post
    Acers are nice looking too.
    Had a beautiful acer in my last houseÖ. When they turn they are quite spectacular

  11. #11
    Grand Master Saint-Just's Avatar
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    Acers are wonderful trees but do not like the wind.
    'Against stupidity, the gods themselves struggle in vain' - Schiller.

  12. #12
    I was required to replace a diseased Horse Chestnut that had to be felled. I had a choice of two tree types and went for a Field Maple. I canít remember exactly how much it was but it was between £500 and £1000. The tree surgeon sourced and planted it properly.

  13. #13
    Grand Master
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    Thanks for all the comments, Mrs W is less enthusiastic about trees than I am, even though sheís the head gardener Iím sure she can be persuaded!

  14. #14
    Grand Master RustyBin5's Avatar
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    Acer and also Rowan trees are good looking.

  15. #15
    Journeyman
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    We are just coming out of the planting season so successful establishment of large trees will be harder and more expensive, you will be looking at containerised or rootballed trees. Wait till next year and look at either 10-12 standard or 12-14 heavy standard trees bare rooted stock which will give instant impact, and be cheaper -roughly 3-4m in height. Bertram trees are industry leaders but you will pay a premium. Tree sizes I've mentioned you should be able to get reasonably cheaply, as a general rule the larger the tree the harder to establish. You will need to provide additional watering during dry periods until the tree has established sufficient roots to support itself.

  16. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by CriticalMass View Post
    We had a couple of fairly big trees delivered last year from a Yorkshire company called ‘Ornamental Trees’. Great customer service. These were 5m high but reasonably easy to move and didn’t need mechanical handling.
    You’d probably need some advice/ research into what will prosper in your particular circumstances- we went for a Liquidamber and a Rowan.
    I've purchased two small trees from Ornamental Trees. Very good service.

    The first tree, planted in spring 2018, was a crab apple tree, which was 1-2 m, I think. It is now 3-4m, I think.. It has the most lovely flowers in the spring, and looks nice all summer and autumn. I wish that I could keep it from growing any taller, but alas.

    The following spring I got a small peach tree from Ornamental Trees, about the same size at 1.5m or so. I'm trying to keep it down to 2 meters or so, in order to make it possible to get all the fruit without using a ladder. Consequently, I've had to prune it down each of the past two years. The last time was last weekend. It too has nice flowers. The second year we got a bit of fruit from it (4 peaches), but none last year because of peach tree curl. I'm hoping for a better result this year.

    I was 62 and 63 when these were planted.

    Best wishes,
    Bob
    Last edited by rfrazier; 6th March 2021 at 09:17.

  17. #17

    Buying mature trees, advice please!

    Quote Originally Posted by Wolfie View Post
    Iíll pay you £100 to take away a giant silver birch (35ft?)Ö. Itís about to hit some telephone poles in my front garden
    Silver birch are a good choice for o/p. Tall w/o great width so will easily pass through 4í ft gap. Light and airy and can plant 3 in quite a small area for good effect.
    Downside is might not be too keen on very heavy clay soil...
    Last edited by Kingstepper; 6th March 2021 at 09:17.

  18. #18
    Master
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    I had a couple of robinias planted at our last house. They were about 8ft high when we got them, so a hole dug by hand and not difficult to manhandle into place. I think they are a really attractive tree - they have a lovely golden foliage - and grow quickly (up to about 30ft I think). The only downside for me was the branches on some species (ie the ones I bought!) are slightly thorny.

  19. #19
    Craftsman
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Nuttington View Post
    Barcham Trees are a good starting point to see whatís available.
    I'll second that. A few years ago, I bought an orchard worth of traditional old English fruit trees from them like quince and mulberry. They went in a treat! Sadly I've since sold the house so not reaped the benefits!

    https://www.linkedin.com/company/barcham-trees-plc/

    I've also bought from Ashridge ..

    https://www.ashridgetrees.co.uk/trees/large-trees

  20. #20
    Master
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    The access will be the biggest constraint. Given your understandable desire for instant impact and not something that looks great in 20 years, I would take a look at a ligustrum excelsum which is available in many places and should establish itself fairly quickly to provide a feature that changes with the seasons. If the soil is pour then dig something far larger than the root ball and back-fill with good quality mix to give it a chance to establish.

    https://www.rhs.org.uk/plants/69040/...um-(v)/Details

  21. #21
    Hi Paul
    I'd personally go for a couple of container grown flowering crab apples- such as Malus John Downie or Golden Hornet
    spectacular trees that blossom beautifully then give green-turning -to red fruits until not far short of Christmas
    planted a couple in every garden I've ever owned and they always look good

  22. #22
    Would highly recommend an Acer Freemani Autumn Blaze.

    Amazing autumn colour.

  23. #23
    Grand Master
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    Thanks for all the suggestions, I'll pass these on to the Head Gardener (Mrs W).

  24. #24

    Trees

    Acers are a good choice but soil fussy ie no clay they like a slightly acid soil my favourite tree is the wedding cake tree Cornus Controversa Variegata the branches are layered I had one in my last garden that I planted and it got up to about 8ft I wanted to fetch it with us to our new house but it was to large they tend to be quite expensive Beechwood nurseries on eBay do them for £29.99 I keep meaning to get one for the new garden.

  25. #25
    Grand Master hogthrob's Avatar
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    I had a crab apple in my previous house. Looked great, but it dropped a lot crab apples that needed clearing up. Seemed to be a bit of a wasp magnet too.

    It depends on how many acres your estate has, but willows aren't normally suitable for gardens. Apart from the subsidence dangers, they're prone to dropping branches. Beech trees have the same problem with dropping branches.

    I like silver birches; graceful, and don't spread too much.

  26. #26
    Craftsman
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    Quote Originally Posted by hogthrob View Post
    I had a crab apple in my previous house. Looked great, but it dropped a lot crab apples that needed clearing up.
    Pick the crab apples and make jelly. Our tree produces 12-15 jars a year. Lovely with roast lamb!

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