Plant Selection Guides

The following list is a guide of commonly used plant materials for specific site conditions.

Trees for partially shaded locations
Acer campestreCrataegus crusgalliThuja occidentalis in variety
Amelanchier canadensisIlex in varietyTsuga canadensis
Cercis canadensisMagnolia virginianaCornus florida
Oxydendrum arboreum
Shrubs for partially shaded locations
Abelia grandifloraKalmia latifoliaRhododendron nudiflorum
Aronia arbutifoliaLeucothoe axillarisRhododendron viscosum
Clethra alnifoliaLigustrum ovalifoliumRhus aromatica ‘Gro-low’
Cornus in varietyLindera benzoinTaxus in variety
Euonymus fort. varietiesMahonia Vaccinium in varietyHamamelis virginiana
Pieris japonica Viburnum in varietyHydrangea quercifoliaPyracantha coccinea
Vinca minorIlex crenata in varietyRhododendron hybrids
Ilex glabraRhododendron maximum
Trees for seashore locations
Acer pseudoplatanusIlex opacaPlatanus acerifolia
Amelanchier canadensisJuniperus virginianaSophora\Styphnolobium Japonica
Crataegus lavalleiNyssa sylvaticaCupressocyparis leylandii
Pinus thunbergii
Shrubs for seashore locations
Arctostaphylos uva-ursiJuniperus hor. ‘Bar Harbor’Rosa rugosa
Aronia arbutifoliaLigustrum ovalifoliumSyringa vulgaris
Clethra alnifoliaMyrica pensylvanicaVaccinium corymbosum
Hydrangea macrophyllaPrunus cistenaViburnum dentatum
Ilex glabraPrunus maritimaViburnum prunifolium
Juniperus confertaRhus aromaticaYucca
Trees for wet locations
Acer rubrumIlex opacaQuercus palustris
Amelanchier canadensisLiquidambar styracifluaSalix in variety
Betula nigraMetasequoia glyptostroboidesTaxodium distichum
Gleditsia triacanthosNyssa sylvaticaThuja occidentalis nigra
Fraxinus am. ‘Autumn Purple’Platanus occidentalisTilia americana
Shrubs for wet locations
Aronia arbutifoliaIlex glabraVaccinium
Calluna vulgarisIlex verticillataViburnum in variety
Clethra alnifoliaItea virginicaCornus stolonifera
Kalmia latifolia
Trees for dry locations
Acer ginnalaPinus strobusSophora japonica
Acer platanoidesPrunus virginiana 'Canada Red'Tilia cordata
Fraxinus pennsylvanicaQuercus coccineaGleditsia varieties
Quercus rubra
Shrubs for dry locations
Artostaphylos uva-ursiMyrica pensylvanciaViburnum lantana
HamamelisPrunus maritimaViburnum prunifolium
Juniperus chin. ‘Sargenti’Rhamnus frangulaYucca filamentosa
Juniperus horiz. varietiesRhus aromaticaLigustrum in variety
Rosa rugosa
Trees native to the East Coast
Acer rubrumCornus floridaNyssa sylvatica
Amelanchier canadensisIlex opacaQuercus species
Betula nigraJuniperus virginianaTaxodium distichum
Cercis canadensisLiquidambar styracifluaChionanthus virginicus
Liriodendron tulipifera
Shrubs native to the East Coast
Amelanchier canadensisIlex glabraPrunus maritima
Arctostaphylos uva-ursiIlex verticillataRhododendron nudiflorum
Aronia arbutifoliaItea virginicaRhododendron viscosum
Clethra alnifoliaKalmia latifoliaRhus varieties
Cornus sericeaLindera benzoinVaccinum species
Fothergilla gardeniiMyrica pensylvanicaViburnum species
Hamamelis virginianaParthenocissus quin.
Trees for screening and hedging
Acer campestreHamamelisPseudotsuga menziesii
Amelanchier canadensisJuniperus virginianaThuja occidentalis varieties
Carpinus betuus ‘Fastigiata’Juniperus ch. ‘Hetzii columnaris’Thuja plicata varieties
Cotinus varietiesMagnolia grandifloraTsuga canadensis
CryptomeriaPicea abiesCupressocyparis lelandii
Pinus strobus
Shrubs for screening and hedging
Buxus varietiesLigustrum ovalifoliumTaxus varieties
Euonymus kiautschovicusPhyllostachysViburnum x pragense
Forythia intermediaPrunus laurocerasusViburnum rhytidophyllum
Ilex crenata varietiesRhododendron maximumsIlex glabra
Rhododendron hybrids
Deer-resistant trees - Low browse risk only
(Please note that no plant is deer proof!)
Betula speciesFagus sylvaticaPrunus Serrulata
Cercidiphyllum japonicumGleditsia triacanthosPseudotsuga menziesii
Cercis canadensisPicea abiesThuja plicata
Cornus varietiesPicea Pungens
Deer-resistant shrubs - Low browse risk only
(Please note that no plant is deer proof!)
Aronia arb. ‘Brilliantissima’CotoneasterMyrica pensylvanica
Berberis varietiesCryptomeriaJaponica
Pieris japonicaBuxusForsythia intermedia
Pinus mugoCaryopterisIlex glabra
PotentillaClethra alnifoliaJuniperus varieties
Pyracantha coccineaCornus sericeaKerria japonica
Syringa vulgarisCotinusLeucothoe varieties

Tree Sizes and Weights

The following tables represent the recommended root ball sizes for trees that are grown in the ground in a nursery and harvested by being balled and burlapped (B&B). Root ball size is based on height or caliper size of the trees. These root ball sizes can vary according to growing conditions surrounding a tree. For example, a plant might require a larger root ball than required due to a wide spreading root system because of natural habit, infrequent root pruning or out of season transplanting. There also might be circumstances when a smaller root ball is recommended as with container stock, or plants that have been frequently root pruned or transplanted. The following tables will help in determining estimated sizes and weights for trees.

Standard root ball sizes for Upright Evergreens
HeightRoot ball diameter
2’ – 3’12”
3’ – 4’14”
4’ – 5’16”
5’ – 6’20”
6’ – 7’22”
7’ – 8’24”
8’ – 9’28”
9’ – 10’30”
10’ – 12’36”
Standard root ball size for Shade Trees
CaliperRoot ball diameter
1” – 1 ¼”16”
1 ¼” – 1 ½”18”
1 ½” – 1 ¾”20”
1 ¾” – 2”22”
2” – 2 ½”24”
2 ½” – 3”28”
3” – 3 ½”32”
3 ½” – 4”38”
4” – 4 ½”42”
4 ½” – 5”48”
5” – 5 ½”54”
Root ball weights
Diameter of root ballApproximate weight
12”45 lbs.
14”70 lbs.
16”100 lbs.
18”150 lbs.
20”200 lbs.
22”250 lbs.
24”300 lbs.
26”450 lbs.
28”600 lbs.
30”700 lbs.
32”750 lbs.
36”1150 lbs.
40”1600 lbs.
44”2100 lbs.
48”2700 lbs.

Helpful Hints

Tree and Shrub Measurement Standards

  • To determine the height of field and container grown plant material, measure from ground level (or soil level) at or near the top of the trunk flare to the top of the plant.
  • To determine average height for coniferous evergreens measure from the top of the root ball (or trunk flare) to the midpoint between the upper-most whorl and the tip of the leader.
  • Caliper measurement of a tree trunk should be taken six inches above the ground, up to and including four-inch caliper size. If the caliper at six inches above the ground exceeds four inches, the caliper should be measured at 12 inches above the ground.

Plant Spacing Guide

Spacing Guide for Planting Groundcovers, Annuals, Bulbs, and Perennials
Total Square Footage4″ apart6″ apart8″ apart12″ apart18″ apart24″ apart
Mulch and Topsoil Coverage
Coverage (in cubic yards) for bulk mulch and topsoil
Total Square FootageDepth in Inches
1 inch2 inches3 inches4 inches

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