Look and measure BEFORE you plant

Submitted Photo Utility companies have had to prune trees to prevent interference with power lines. Before planting trees, be sure to research trees appropriate for the site where they will be planted.

People are busy adding to their home landscapes with new trees and shrubs. These will hopefully bring long lasting enjoyment and value to the landscapes they are planted. Be sure to spend some time planning and researching before deciding where to plant. Time spent planning can prevent future problems and bring long lasting satisfaction with planting decisions.

Look up. The best of example of not looking up and planning is through Minot and in some rural areas. Trees were planted in boulevards and across the front and sides of larger acreages without first looking up. Now, these mature trees are 30 to 50 feet tall. And where there are power lines above them, the power company has pruned them to prevent interference by the trees with power lines. And it is no fault of the power company that these trees are now very misshapen.

If you want to plant under power lines, do some research. There are trees that will be 12 to 15 feet tall as mature trees. There are a number of them available with many having attractive flowers, bark and foliage. This will help the power company greatly and will provide years of attractive trees for you and others to enjoy.

Before buying any plants, do some research. Carefully read the tags of the trees and shrubs you are interested in buying and make note of their mature height and width. When you have found the plants you feel will fit into your landscape, get out your tape measure. Measure where they will be planted in your yard to be sure that when mature they will fit in as planned. Back up from your yard and try to visualize what it will look like when the trees and shrubs are mature. If planted the proper distance from structures, gardens or other trees and shrubs, it will provide an attractive, low maintenance landscape. There should be no need to later prune excessively or remove entirely misplaced plants. Trees especially can grow to block views, crowd sidewalks as well as house soffits and driveways, and can be a problem for sewer lines. And don’t forget property lines. You neighbors may not want to share your trees half in their yards.

Take the time before planting. You are planning a landscape that will likely out live you.

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