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TREES & plants

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  • Regal elm (Ulmus 'Regal')

    Also known as: Regal elm

    The tall regal elm has good Dutch elm disease (DED) resistance. It can be used as a specimen or in groups for streets, parks, and large yards. This hybrid is a University of Wisconsin introduction.

    Size Range: 
    • Large tree (more than 40 feet)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Non-native

  • RENAISSANCE REFLECTION® paper birch (Betula papyrifera 'Renci')

    Also known as: RENAISSANCE REFLECTION® paper birch

    The Renaissance Reflection® birch is a tall, fast-growing tree with striking bark that displays dark green foliage throughout the season, transitioning to a golden color in the fall. This tree is resistant to bronze birch borer (BBB) but does not do well when exposed to drought or polluted conditions.

    Size Range: 
    • Large tree (more than 40 feet)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Chicago area, 
    • Illinois, 
    • North America

  • Rhododendron P.J.M. (Rhododendron 'P.J.M.')

    Also known as: P.J.M.hybrid rhododendron

    Rhododendrons are shrubs with showy flowers in spring, usually in shade of white, pink, purple and red. Some types of rhododendrons that lose their leaves in winter are commonly called azaleas. Relatively few rhododendrons are fully hardy in the Chicago area or can cope well with its alkaline soils. The hybrid Rhododendron P.J.M. does very well in cold climates and is one of the hardier rhododendrons for the Chicago region. It is able to tolerate near-neutral soils.

    Size Range: 
    • Medium shrub (5-8 feet), 
    • Small shrub (3-5 feet)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Partial sun/shade (4-6 hrs light daily), 
    • Full shade (4 hrs or less of light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Non-native

  • River birch (Betula nigra)

    Also known as: river birch, red birch

    River birch is a popular, fast-growing native tree for the home landscape. Attractive salmon-pink to reddish-brown bark exfoliates to reveal lighter inner bark. Dark green foliage turns a beautiful buttery yellow in the fall. This species is resistant to bronze birch borer (BBB).

    Size Range: 
    • Medium tree (25-40 feet)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Chicago area, 
    • Illinois, 
    • North America

  • Rock cotoneaster (Cotoneaster horizontalis)

    Also known as: rock cotoneaster; rockspray

    Rock cotoneaster is a low spreading shrub often used as a ground cover or left to spill over slopes and ledge walls. The densely branched plant has glossy, dark green foliage, deep red fruits and reddish purple fall color.

    Size Range: 
    • Small shrub (3-5 feet), 
    • Low-growing shrub (under 3 feet)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily), 
    • Partial sun/shade (4-6 hrs light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Non-native

  • Rose-of-Sharon (Hibiscus syriacus)

    Also known as: Rose-of-Sharon; shrubby althea

    Rose-of-Sharon is an upright, narrow shrub or small tree valued for its mid-summer to late season prolific blooms. A wide range of flower colors vary by cultivar. Plants are late to leaf out in the spring.

    Size Range: 
    • Compact tree (10-15 feet), 
    • Large shrub (more than 8 feet), 
    • Medium shrub (5-8 feet)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily), 
    • Partial sun/shade (4-6 hrs light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Non-native

  • Rough-leaved deutzia (Deutzia scabra)

    Also known as: Rough-leaved deutzia, roughleaf deutzia, fuzzy deutzia

    Rough-leaved deutzia is an old-fashioned, large, upright to oval, spreading shrub reaching 6 to 10 feet tall and 4 to 8 feet wide. The spreading, arching stems are laden with showy, pink-tinged white flower panicles in spring. The dark, peeling bark adds winter texture. Best at back of border or use as a screen. May be difficult to find in nursery with newer and more improved plants available.

    Size Range: 
    • Large shrub (more than 8 feet), 
    • Medium shrub (5-8 feet)

    Native Locale: 
    • Non-native

  • Rough-leaved dogwood (Cornus drummondii)

    Also known as: Rough-leaved dogwood, roughleaf dogwood

    Rough-leaved dogwood is a native large shrub or small tree, often mistaken for gray dogwood. Named for the rough textured leaves, it has fleshy white fruit, dark green foliage that turns burgundy red fall color. Best used for naturalizing in moist areas. May be difficult to find in nurseries.

    Size Range: 
    • Small tree (15-25 feet), 
    • Large shrub (more than 8 feet)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily), 
    • Partial sun/shade (4-6 hrs light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Illinois, 
    • North America

  • Rugosa Rose (Rosa rugosa)

    Also known as: Rugosa rose, hedgerow rose, saltspray rose, Japanese rose

    Rugosa roses are known for their extreme hardiness, alluring spicy fragrance, attractive fruit and fall color. Rugosa roses are large, 4 to 6 feet high shrubs, suitable for difficult sites and tend to have fewer disease problems.

    Size Range: 
    • Medium shrub (5-8 feet), 
    • Small shrub (3-5 feet)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Non-native

  • Running Serviceberry (Amelanchier stolonifera)

    Also known as: Running serviceberry, Running Juneberry

    Running serviceberry is a small, 4 to 6 feet high suckering shrub with white flowers, dark blue edible fruits. Native to Northeastern United States. May be difficult to find in the nursery trade.

    Size Range: 
    • Medium shrub (5-8 feet), 
    • Small shrub (3-5 feet)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily), 
    • Partial sun/shade (4-6 hrs light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • North America

  • Russian-sage (Perovskia atriplicifolia)

    Also known as: Russian-sage; Russian sage; Afghan-sage

    Russian-sage is a semi-hardy sub-shrub or perennial grown for its handsome gray-green foliage and beautiful late season lavender-blue flower spikes. Cut to the ground each spring to promote new growth.

    Size Range: 
    • Small shrub (3-5 feet), 
    • Low-growing shrub (under 3 feet), 
    • Large plant (more than 24 inches), 
    • Medium plant (12-24 inches)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Non-native

  • Sand love grass (Eragrostis trichodes)

    Also known as: Sand love grass

    Sand love grass is a Midwest native that prefers sandy or well-drained sites. It is a warm season, clumping grass. It will self- seed.

    Size Range: 
    • Large plant (more than 24 inches)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Illinois, 
    • North America

  • Sargent's cherry (Prunus sargentii)

    Also known as: Sargent's cherry

    Sargent's cherry is one of the hardier, more adaptable and attractive trees for the Midwest. The tree has beautiful pink flowers in early spring and shiny green foliage that turns bronze to red in fall.

    Size Range: 
    • Large tree (more than 40 feet), 
    • Medium tree (25-40 feet)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily), 
    • Partial sun/shade (4-6 hrs light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Non-native

  • Sargent's cranberry-bush viburnum (Viburnum sargentii)

    Also known as: Sargent's cranberry-bush; Sargent's viburnum; Sargent's cranberry-bush viburnum; Sargent viburnum

    Sargent's cranberry-bush viburnum is an upright, rounded shrub with a coarse branching habit. The white lacecap flowers have purple anthers followed by bright red persistent fruits. New foliage is burgundy changing to dark green and a wine-red fall color adding to the seasonal interest.

    Size Range: 
    • Large shrub (more than 8 feet)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily), 
    • Partial sun/shade (4-6 hrs light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Non-native

  • Sargent’s crabapple (Malus sargentii)

    Also known as: Sargent’s crabapple

    This 6 to 10 foot dwarf crabapple can be considered a compact tree or large shrub. In spring, pink buds open to a profusion of fragrant, white flower clusters. The persistent, 1/3-inch red fruits attractive birds and other wildlife. The foliage is dark green, turns yellow in the fall, and contrasts nicely with the red fruit. An excellent choice for the shrub border, in mass, or near patios.

    Size Range: 
    • Small tree (15-25 feet), 
    • Compact tree (10-15 feet), 
    • Large shrub (more than 8 feet), 
    • Medium shrub (5-8 feet)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Non-native

  • Saskatoon serviceberry (Amelanchier alnifolia)

    Also known as: Saskatoon serviceberry, western serviceberry, alder-leaved serviceberry, Indian Pear

    Saskatoon or western serviceberry is a medium to large upright, multi-stemmed shrub with four-season interest. The clusters of fragrant, white drooping flowers appear in spring, followed by large, bluish-purple berries which are juicy and edible. Small blue-green leaves turn brilliant yellow and red in fall and the light gray bark is smooth with vertical streaks add winter interest. Excellent for shrub borders, woodland gardens and in mass.

    Size Range: 
    • Large shrub (more than 8 feet), 
    • Medium shrub (5-8 feet)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily), 
    • Partial sun/shade (4-6 hrs light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • North America

  • Sassafras (Sassafras albidum)

    Also known as: sassafras

    Sassafras is a North American native tree that provides vivid fall color and interesting mitten-shaped leaves. In the wild it can form thickets, a trait that may not be appropriate for every landscape.

    Size Range: 
    • Medium tree (25-40 feet), 
    • Small tree (15-25 feet)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily), 
    • Partial sun/shade (4-6 hrs light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Chicago area, 
    • Illinois, 
    • North America

  • Saucer magnolia (Magnolia soulangiana)

    Also known as: saucer magnolia

    The elegant, goblet-shaped flowers of these handsome small trees are among the beauties of spring. Large leathery leaves, smooth gray bark, and yellow fall color add to the seasonal interest. Many cultivars of saucer magnolia are available, with a wide range of flower colors and shapes.

    Size Range: 
    • Medium tree (25-40 feet), 
    • Small tree (15-25 feet), 
    • Compact tree (10-15 feet)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily), 
    • Partial sun/shade (4-6 hrs light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Non-native

  • Savin juniper (Juniperus sabina)

    Also known as: Savin juniper

    Savin juniper is a durable, low-maintenance evergreen shrub that has blue-green foliage consisting of sometimes prickly overlapping scales. It reaches 4 to 6 feet high with a low, 5 to 10 feet wide spreading habit. Once established it requires little maintenance. It is native to the mountains of Europe. In fall it has bluish, berry-like fruits that are really modified cones.

    Size Range: 
    • Medium shrub (5-8 feet), 
    • Small shrub (3-5 feet), 
    • Low-growing shrub (under 3 feet), 
    • Medium plant (12-24 inches)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Non-native

  • Sawara-cypress (Chamaecyparis pisifera)

    Also known as: Sawara-cypress, Sawara Falsecypress, Japanese Falsecypress, sawara cypress

    Its pyramidal habit, loose open branching and scale-like, dark green foliage make the sawara-cypress a notable option for specimen plantings or in groups in a large landscape. Besides its remarkable foliage, this evergreen has handsome reddish-brown bark that peels off in strips and tiny, reddish-brown cones on short stalks.

    Size Range: 
    • Large tree (more than 40 feet), 
    • Medium tree (25-40 feet), 
    • Small tree (15-25 feet), 
    • Compact tree (10-15 feet), 
    • Large shrub (more than 8 feet), 
    • Low-growing shrub (under 3 feet)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Non-native

  • Scarlet clematis (Clematis texensis)

    Also known as: Scarlet clematis, Texas clematis

    Scarlet clematis is native only to Texas, but is hardy in more northern climates. The urn-shaped lowers are smaller than many types of clematis and are some shade of scarlet or pink.

    Size Range: 
    • Large plant (more than 24 inches)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • North America

  • Scarlet hawthorn (Crataegus coccinea)

    Also known as: scarlet hawthorn, red haw, red-fruited hawthorn

    Scarlet hawthorn is a small tree that can be utilized under power lines. It has white flowers in spring followed by red fruit. The tree does bear long thorns.

    Size Range: 
    • Small tree (15-25 feet)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Chicago area, 
    • Illinois, 
    • North America

  • Scarlet oak (Quercus coccinea)

    Also known as: scarlet oak

    True to its name, the scarlet oak produces wonderful scarlet fall color. This tree is best used in residential yards rather than as a street tree.

    Size Range: 
    • Large tree (more than 40 feet)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Chicago area, 
    • Illinois, 
    • North America

  • Scarlet runner bean (ANNUAL VINE) (Phaseolus coccineus)

    Also known as: Scarlet runner bean

    Scarlet runner bean is an annual ornamental vine that is grown for its bright red to red-orange flowers. It also produces edible beans.

    Size Range: 
    • Large plant (more than 24 inches)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Non-native

  • Scots pine (Not recommended) (Pinus sylvestris)

    Also known as: Scots pine, Scotch pine

    Due to susceptibility to many diseases and pests, Scots pines are not recommended for planting anywhere in this region and usually require removal and/or replacement. Scots pine, also called Scotch pine, is an introduced species from Europe and Asia. Mature trees have an open spreading habit with distinguishing orange, scaly bark.

    Size Range: 
    • Large tree (more than 40 feet), 
    • Medium tree (25-40 feet)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Non-native

  • Sea-buckthorn (Hippophae rhamnoides)

    Also known as: sea-buckthorn; sea buckthorn; common seabuckthorn

    A large, loose, open shrub or small tree forming large colonies. The silver-gray foliage and persistent orange berries on female plants add to the appeal. May be difficult to find in nurseries.

    Size Range: 
    • Compact tree (10-15 feet), 
    • Large shrub (more than 8 feet)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily), 
    • Partial sun/shade (4-6 hrs light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Non-native

  • Seaside alder (Alnus maritima)

    Also known as: seaside alder, brook alder

    Seaside alder is a fast-growing native tree. It stays short enough to be used under utility lines, but may be difficult to locate in local nurseries.

    Size Range: 
    • Medium tree (25-40 feet), 
    • Small tree (15-25 feet)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily), 
    • Partial sun/shade (4-6 hrs light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • North America

  • Serbian spruce (Picea omorika)

    Also known as: Serbian spruce

    Tall and slender, with graceful upswept branches, the Serbian spruce is an elegant evergreen tree as a specimen in the landscape. It has glossy dark green needles with slender streaks of white and distinctive purple cones. It is a threatened species in its native Serbia, Bosnia, and Herzegovina, but is an adaptable, drought tolerant tree in the Midwest.

    Size Range: 
    • Large tree (more than 40 feet)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily), 
    • Partial sun/shade (4-6 hrs light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Non-native

  • Seven-Son Flower (Heptacodium miconioides)

    Also known as: Seven-Son Flower

    Seven-son flower, which is really a large shrub or small tree, produces white flowers in late summer. After the petals fall, the pink sepals remain giving the appearance that the plant is in flower again. The whitish-tan bark peels in strips and is striking against a dark background. Use as a specimen plant, back or the border, or in a naturalized area.

    Size Range: 
    • Small tree (15-25 feet), 
    • Compact tree (10-15 feet), 
    • Large shrub (more than 8 feet)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily), 
    • Partial sun/shade (4-6 hrs light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Non-native

  • Shagbark hickory (Carya ovata)

    Also known as: shagbark hickory

    Plant a shagbark hickory in a large landscape for excellent shade. This Midwest native is named for its bark, which peels away in large, flat, curving plates, giving the tree a shaggy appearance. As a member of the walnut family, the hickory produces edible nuts.

    Size Range: 
    • Large tree (more than 40 feet)

    Light Exposure: 
    • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily), 
    • Partial sun/shade (4-6 hrs light daily)

    Native Locale: 
    • Chicago area, 
    • Illinois, 
    • North America

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