What are the best trees for shade?

This week in Cincinnati Gardening Made Simple, we answer, “What are the best shade trees in Cincinnati?”

Stately shade trees provide relief from blistering Cincinnati summers, beautify your landscape, and will reduce your energy bill. By strategically planting your shade tree in the right location to block the summer sun, you reduce the energy used to cool your home. 

How to find the right shade tree

When purchasing a shade tree, you want to do your research or ask an expert. You want to choose a tree that will thrive in your soil type and receive the proper sun exposure. 

We believe research should be made simple. At Natorp’s tree nursery, we grow 30,000 trees each year. Our tree experts are always available to answer your tree questions. You can stop or email questions@natorp.com or click here to search our tree library. Here are 7 Trees that we recommend:

Top 7 Best Shade Trees

Zelkova a shade tree in Cincinnati, Ohio

Green Vase Zelkova 

A popular, rapidly growing variety with a compact, vase-shaped form, and arching branches. The elm-like foliage turns a showy bronze-red to yellow in fall. It makes a beautiful shade tree, and that is very tolerant of urban conditions.  

White Oak, a shade tree in Cincinnati,Ohio

White Oak

An attractive slower growing native oak with deep green foliage and deep red to coppery brown fall color. Prized for its disease resistance and drought tolerance. It is also adaptable to many soil conditions. 

Redpointe Maple, a shade tree, in Cincinnati, Ohio

Redpointe® Red Maple

A vigorous growing maple with a compact form, attractive pyramidal shape, and reliable red fall color. It is a beautiful tree from spring through fall with excellent heat, disease, and insect resistance.

Allee Lacebark Elm a shade tree in Cincinnati, Ohio

Allee Lacebark Elm

A fast-growing, tough, durable tree sure to grace any landscape. The beautiful upright and arching form is accentuated by exfoliating bark in shades of gray with orangey-brown. Also, it has excellent disease resistance.

Gingkgo Tree in Cincinnati, Ohio

Princeton Sentry Ginkgo

Princeton Sentry has a conical form of this variety that makes this a good tree for streetside plantings and limited sites. It has a remarkable golden-yellow fall color which persists for several weeks. 

Black Gum Tree in Cincinnati, Ohio

Black Gum

A beautiful native tree with outstanding lustrous green foliage that changes for a fabulous fall display. It prefers deep, moist, well-drained soils, but is adaptable to other soils. Use as a lawn specimen or combine in mixed tree plantings.

Our tree nursery grows over 30,000 trees each year, Click here to find the right tree for your landscape.

Have questions? Email our tree experts questions@natorp.com.