Neem tree - used cosmetically and medicinally by many... more
Bauhinia blakeana - Hong Kong Orchid Tree. The most... more
Napoleons Plume Orchid tree. The blossom is spectacular,... more
Purple Orchid tree, butterfly tree. Vigorous shade... more
The slightly fragrant flowers are reminiscent of showy... more
Bauhinia variegata alba, White orchid tree, White... more
Red Kapok tree is a remarkable tree with spectacular... more
Weeping red Bottlebrush. Callistemon citrinus (Melaleuca... more
Ylang Ylang, Perfume Tree, Chanel #5 Tree. Famous... more
Golden shower tree, Indian Laburnum - To many tropical... more
Cassia javanica - Apple Blossom Tree. Beautiful pink... more
Kapok Tree, Silk Cotton Tree - A majestic tropical... more
Pink Silk Floss Tree. One of the most beautiful trees... more
Seagrape. Popular plant used as an ornamental in gardens... more
Bo-Tree, Sacred Ficus. This large deciduous tree is... more
One of the most spectacular trees of subtopics that... more
Synonym: Lonchocarpus capassa. Apple Leaf, Rain Tree,... more
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People always ask "what is the best fast growing shade tree for my backyard?" There are several fast growing shade trees available so it is going to depend a lot on the size of your yard and your personal likes and dislikes. For our purposes, we will be talking about the best tropical shade trees. Some of the trees you will see here can also be grown in subtropical climates if they are given protection from frost while they are still young. Do you want a tree that will give shade to the house to help keep it cooler? If so, and you have the room, you may want to consider the Royal Poinciana. It does take a lot of space as it can spread to 40 ft wide or more. Other questions to ask are would you prefer a tree with beautiful flowers or how about one with abundant fruit? The best shade trees are going to be those trees that check most of your needs and wants boxes. Other large trees that will give you plenty of shade are:
Maybe you are looking for something a little smaller. If you have a smaller yard or even just a patio on which to grow a tree, there are still many trees that grow fast and stay on the smaller side. One of the fastest growing small trees is the Moringa oleifera tree. It does require trimming to make it branch out and if left untrimmed, it can reach upwards of 15-20 ft in one growing season. Unfortunately it will not give much shade if left to grow straight up. As you trim this tree to help it branch out, you can also eat the leaves you have cut. They go great in a salad. It also produces long green pods that have been compared to a cross between peanuts and asparagus. The roots of the Moringa tree have also been used as a substitute for horseradish giving the tree the nickname of the Horseradish tree. Staying with the edible tree theme, there are also a few mango trees that are classified as dwarf or semi-dwarf and can be kept to 15 ft or less. There are also a couple of avocado varieties such as the Wurtz, which is a true dwarf, and the Fuerte which is a semi dwarf and can be kept on the small side as well.
A great fast growing tree for the front yard is one of the Bauhinia family of trees. They are classified as large trees as they can reach over 20 ft tall at maturity, but most of them stay around 15–18 ft. Many of them produce beautiful flowers in the winter and spring, although some flower year round. They are large enough to produce some nice shade for your yard where you can put a nice bench or seat to just sit and enjoy the view and yet they are small enough that they will not get too large for the neighborhood. In this same size range is the Chinaberry tree. This tree will also grow to around 20ft tall , is very fast growing and has beautiful lilac-purple flowers that have a sweet vanilla like fragrance.This tree is also a little more cold hardy than some as it has been reported to grow as far north as zone 7. The Giant Potato tree is another fast growing small shade tree. It will grow to about 15 ft in height and has a spreading type canopy that will produce abundant purple flowers in a short time.
We have talked about large trees and small trees, but what about some of those other needs you may have. What about low maintenance fast growing shade trees? Well, consider the Sea Grape tree. It is very easy to grow and if several are planted in a row, they can make a great boundary for your yard and also produce a small, edible grape that is often used to make jellies. These trees are great for those living near the ocean as they tolerate the salt spray very well.
Another great border tree is the Magnolia champaca also known as the Joy Perfume tree as the flowers from this tree are used to make the famous perfume by that name. It grows with an upright shape to about 15-20 feet in height. It makes a great border tree when planted in a row with others and it can also be grown in a large container. It is somewhat cold tolerant.
Having shade trees in the yard is a great way to help beautify your property and it makes a great place to sit and relax. Maybe you can plant a nice shade garden under one of your trees. Add a water feature and it may just become one of your favorite spots to relax. The fast growing large trees listed above would be perfect for that. Surround your shade trees with shade loving flowers for even more color in the landscape.
You can find plenty of shade trees for sale in our online store. If you are looking for shade trees for sale near you and you are in the Southwest Florida, Ft. Myers area, please visit our Garden Center located at 13890 Orange River Blvd., Ft. Myers, FL 33905 and see our collection of fast growing shade trees. You may find a few surprises!