Three ways trees make your life easier, more comfortable

Trees. Do you plant them on your property so you can enjoy their growing beauty over many years while adding to the value of your home in the future real estate market? Nothing wrong with that! But in addition to aesthetics, trees provide three very practical benefits that add to your comfort and well-being... and even save you some of your hard-earned money.
Trees create a sound barrier Living close to persistent noise can make you sick. In addition to the possibility of hearing loss, noise has been shown to cause stress, tension and anxiety. If your home is close to a noise source, such as a highway or an industrial complex, planting a "noise buffer" consisting of trees and shrubs can reduce noise by 5 to 10 decibels, effectively reducing the sound by up to 50% to the human ear.
According to an excellent Web site hosted by Agroforestry, the best results are obtained when the noise buffer is planted as close as possible to the source of the noise (rather than close to the area you wish to protect).
The Agroforestry site also recommends planting the trees and shrubs as close together as the species will allow. Additionally, choose plants with dense foliage, preferably foliage that is growing all the way to the ground. As you might guess, evergreen trees provide better year-round noise reduction.
If noise is giving you a migraine, I recommend a visit to http://www.agroforestry.net/overstory/overstory60.html where you can find detailed planting solutions to various noise pollution problems. You can click on a direct link when you go to my Web site www.landsteward.org and find this column under The Plant Man heading.
Trees provide wind protection If you are troubled by blowing dust and debris around your home, thoughtfully planted trees can reduce the problem. But reducing the effect of wind on your home can also keep some dollars in your pocket.
Research conducted on the Great Plains has shown that up to 25 percent energy savings for heating is possible from windbreaks. An evergreen, properly placed, can divert cold winds away from the home. Locate the windbreak upwind from the home, according to advice from the Colorado State University Co-operative extension. Again, you'll find a link to the CSU article at http://www.ext.colostate.edu/PUBS/garden/07225.html embedded in this column at my Web site.
To reduce wind velocity, the recommended distance from your house is between and three times tree height (at maturity) but you'll still reap wind-reducing benefits from trees planted at a distance of up to six tree heights.
Trees provide shade Before you say "Duh," I'm not just referring to the shade you enjoy while sipping lemonade in your hammock. Your home benefits from being shaded from the heat of the sun, and trees are a natural sunshade.
Carefully positioned trees can save up to 25% of a household's energy consumption for heating and cooling, according to computer models created by the U.S. Department of Energy. They estimate that the proper placement of only three trees would save an average household between $100 and $250 in energy costs annually.
While you're at it, create some shade for that air-conditioning unit that's chugging away under the broiling summer sun.
In a nutshell, trees can reduce the headache-inducing effects of noise, the nuisance of wind and the size of your utility bills.
Which specific trees and shrubs should you plant to achieve one or more of these results? In many cases, this will depend on your geographic location and any unique contributing factors that affect your landscape. If you're unsure about what would work best for your particular situation, send some basic details in an e-mail to snipped-for-privacy@landsteward.org and I'll do my best to reply with some suggestions.
Another benefit of trees? Privacy! And that's the subject of next week's Plant Man column!
The Plant Man is here to help. Send questions about trees, shrubs and landscaping to snipped-for-privacy@landsteward.org. For resources and additional information, or to subscribe to Steve's free weekly e-mailed newsletter, go to www.landsteward.org
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
snipped-for-privacy@Greenwoodnursery.com wrote:

Yes and we prefer the pines to Maple or Oak. Don't get me wrong I love the shade a Maple tree provides, but it is the seasonal issue with pollan. This year in Pa zone 5 it is awful. Lived in New Jersey 15 minutes from the boardwalk and miss the ocean with it's healing salt air Bette
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

We are hoping for a good rain tonight to wash the pollen down.
Bill with very dry eyes.
--
S Jersey USA Zone 5 Shade
This article is posted under fair use rules in accordance with
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
William Wagner wrote:

Lucky you. Even after taking 180 mg of Allegra, (once per day) my eyes continue to run. Sometimes I would like to rip them out. My hubby helps me with B & L eye drops. That does help for a short time.
At least the sneezing has stopped. Living across from Lancaster County Amish farms, the dust from the fields plus the liquid fertilizer they put down is . . .PHEUWWWWW.
Sorry for going on and on. This is about my gardening rather than health. Should connect with a health newsgroup. Bette
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
You're right about a really nice tree adding value to your home or real estate. I work as a Realtor, and have seen wonderful mature trees add thousands to value.
I have an old dying Modesto Ash in my front yard. It has provided me shade, and beauty for many years. Unfortunately, it is now diseased, overcome with a lot of misteltoe, which I have removed annually.
Sadly, I will probably remove it next year. I was thinking of replacing it with a Silver Maple, or something of that sort. I had no idea about pollan being an issue.
What would be a tree similar to a Maple, where pollan wouldn't cause a problem???
I'm in Sacramento, California.
Myrl Jeffcoat http://www.myrljeffcoat.com
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Myrl Jeffcoat wrote:

Myrl Jeffcoat wrote:

This may help. http://www.cahe.nmsu.edu/ces/yard/1997/021097.html In all fairness to the group, I am a newbie and others would have a better answer for your problem.
Jeffcoat is such an interesting name. There is a lovely book written by LaVyrle Spencer entitled, "Vows." The main character's last name is Jeffcoat.
Bette
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 5/11/06 8:01 PM, in article snipped-for-privacy@v46g2000cwv.googlegroups.com, "Bette"

There are also daylily hybridizers with the last name Jeffcoat. Any relation Myrl?
Cheryl
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.