Planting a tree in your garden can bring a whole host of benefits. From providing shade for your home that can result in dramatic reductions to your electric bills, to cleaning up the air that you breathe each day, there’s no shortage of reasons to make a tree the next addition to your yard.
However, it can take decades or even centuries for larger trees to reach full maturity, which often means you’ll never enjoy the final product. For this reason, many people ask the question – which trees grow the fastest?
Although it may seem like a simple question, there are many factors which come into play when determining an answer. For example, different trees thrive in different soils and climates, which means that the result won’t be the same for everyone. Depending on where you live, the species of tree that might be best for you may not work for someone else, so it is always best to check a tree’s suitability for your climate before planting.
If you’re looking for a tree from which you can start reaping the benefits with as little wait-time as possible, then here’s a look at which species are generally considered to grow the fastest.
Top 8 Fastest Growing Trees
- Royal Empress
The Royal Empress, otherwise known as the Paulownia tomentosa, tops the list as one of the fasting growing trees out there. With growth rates of up to fifteen feet per year, this tree is widely lauded as one of the fasting growing trees you can plant. Astonishingly, it is capable of reaching its mature height of fifty feet in just three years. With its beautiful pink blossoms, it is also a gorgeous addition to your home.
- Eastern Cottonwood
In the right climates, the Eastern Cottonwood is capable of growing at a steady rate of fifteen feet per year. Once it begins to slow, it continues to grow approximately five feet per year, making it one of the most consistently fast-growing trees in Northern America.
- Lombardy Poplar
Although nothing else seems to come close to the first two on this list, the Lombardy Polar still comes in at an impressive growth rate of up to ten feet per year. These tall, slim trees can grow up to sixty feet in height and look best when planted in uniform rows. They provide an excellent natural edging to gardens and fields.
- Hybrid Poplar
The Hybrid Poplar is one of the most popular choices when it comes to fast-growing trees due to its many different varieties and superior ability to provide shade. Reaching heights of up to fifty feet, these artificially modified trees are capable of growing as much as eight to ten feet per year, meaning that they could reach maturity in as little as five years.
With their unique and beautiful bark, Eucalyptus trees are a great addition to any outdoor space. Not only this, but they are capable of reaching their mature height in three to four years. With a growth rate of between six to eight feet per year, Eucalyptus trees are an excellent choice if you’re looking for a quick fix. Opt for its genetically modified counterpart, transgenic eucalyptus, and this plant might be topping the list, as they have growth rates of up to sixteen feet per year!
- Giant Sequoia
With this tree, the name says it all. Growing both upwards and outwards, the Giant Sequoia is the world’s largest tree in terms of its total volume. Their average height can be anywhere up to eighty-five feet and twenty-three feet in diameter, with record breaking counterparts reaching a whopping three-hundred-and-seven feet tall and twenty-nine feet in diameter. Not only this, but they are able to grow at a rate of six feet per year in their fast-growth stage. If you’re planting one of these, just make sure you leave plenty of space for it to expand!
If you’re looking for something a little more delicate, then the Aspen tree could be the choice for you. With its slim white trunk and eye-catching yellow leaves, this is a stunning tree with a yearly growth-rate of up to five feet. Reaching maturity at fifty feet, you could have your very own full-grown Aspen tree in only ten years.
- Red Maple
The Red Maple tree is another striking species, which throws up gorgeous red tones in the Autumn season. They can grow up to forty feet tall at a rate of four feet per year, again meaning that you could have a full-grown tree within a decade.
Fast-Growing Trees by Climate
Although in general, this list showcases some of the world’s fastest- growing trees, as previously mentioned, climate can play a big role in determining the growth rate of a tree. So, here’s a quick look at which trees are best suited to more extreme climates.
- Cold Climates – In colder climates, evergreen trees top the list, as they are hardy and provide foliage year-round. The Thuja Green Rocket is considered the fastest-growing evergreen, reaching thirty feet in as little as eight years.
- Warm Climates – In hot, dry climates the Chitalpa tree does well and is capable of growing two feet per year, even in drought. In humid climates, there is often little difficulty in growing trees quickly. The Acacia tree is capable of growing a remarkable thirty-five feet in just over a year!
Why Plant a Tree?
Now we know which trees grow the fastest, what are the benefits of planting a tree in your yard?
One of the key benefits of having a tree in your garden is its ability to provide shade for your home. When the summer months arrive and the heat sets in, a house which catches the sun is liable to use far more energy on air-conditioning than one which is shaded. Having a tree outside to block this heat not only allows you to keep the curtains open through the summer, it is also guaranteed to keep your home far cooler than it would be otherwise, with as little need for air-con as possible. This can reduce your energy usage, which is great for both the environment and for your wallet. This is why it’s a good idea to carefully consider the positioning of a tree before planting, to ensure that it has the greatest benefits for your home.
Not only can trees provide shade during the summer, they can also provide a screen from noise. If you live by a busy park or road, or simply have inconsiderate neighbours, trees can provide the perfect buffer for sound which will allow you to relax at home in peace and quiet. On top of this, trees offer shelter from wind, which can protect your home’s roof and exterior in the event of strong gusts. Furthermore, they can provide a privacy screen that separates your home from the outside world and shields it from view if you have neighbours.
As well as this, trees have the ability to cleanse the air that you breathe. Fast growing trees are especially proficient at this task, as in the growth process they are liable to absorb more carbon dioxide and release more oxygen into the atmosphere.
With so many amazing pros of having a tree in your garden, why not invest in one of the fast-growing species on this list and see how it could benefit you?