The Ultimate Tree Guide for First Time Homebuyers

Your garden is your own little slice of nature, and how you cultivate it is entirely down to you. Sounds liberating — but there are over a hundred common tree species in the UK, and they’re not all suitable for every garden. If you’re dreaming of a jungle paradise, follow our guide to find out which trees are right for you. first time homebuyer tree guide

What to consider before you start

You must first make sure you plant your trees legally and without dispute from your neighbours. Read our residential tree laws and neighbour disputes articles to find out more about the UK regulations for growing trees on your property.

Once you know the regulations, it’s time to decide which trees to plant.

Before you start buying and planting your trees, you should ask yourself the following questions:

  • How much space do I have?
  • Is my garden prone to extreme weather?
  • Do I want to grow fruit?
  • Do I want to create an aesthetic effect?
  • How quickly do I want my trees to grow?

All these questions will affect which trees you should plant. Keep your answers in mind as we continue the guide.

Does size matter?

Big trees and small gardens are like ketchup and ice cream — they simply don’t work together. 

Large-growing trees may appear fine when they first start growing, but before long they’ll be impinging on buildings, blocking sunlight, and the roots could interfere with nearby structures. Remember, trees take years to grow to their full size, so keep that in mind when you first start planting them.

Consider the following trees for a small garden:

  • Japanese Maples — these trees are small and slow-growing but offer an attractive shape and bold colours.

  • Stewartia Monodelpha — these multi-stemmed trees take up little space and bud beautiful white flowers.

  • Cercis – these trees are also known as ‘redbuds’ due to their wine-red blossom. The ‘Avondale’ variety only grows to around 3m tall at their largest, making them ideal for a smaller garden.

How close to the house can a tree be?

Location is an important consideration when planting trees. Plant a tree too close to your home and the roots or branches may damage the building as the tree grows larger. Trees can block a lot of light to the inside of a house and can cause lots of debris on patios, especially if birds like sitting in them.

There are no set minimum recommended distances for planting different types of trees near buildings but insurance companies may have their own guidelines. Please check with your own insurance company.

Can I plant my trees in a pot?

Small trees can be planted in pots. This is useful for moving your trees around into different arrangements, and also for easy transportation when you move. 

However, you must consider that a tree can easily outgrow a pot and the roots may get damaged in the process. If you do choose to use a pot, opt for a small tree and a large pot.

How quickly will my trees grow?

You may have dreams of an outdoor jungle — but it’s not going to happen overnight. Trees grow at different rates, so if you’re not a patient person, consider these easy trees to grow:

  • Hybrid Poplar — these are some of the fastest growing trees, reaching up to 2.5m per year.

  • Quaking Aspen — a beautiful autumnal colour, this tree grows to around 1m per year.

  • Dawn Redwood — these are extremely fast growing and will reach a height of 20m plus at maturity.

What features can I get for my tree?

Not all trees are made equal. Consider a fruit or ornamental tree for that extra special touch.

If you wish to grow an abundance of fruit from your tree, consider the following:

  • Apple trees

  • Pear trees

  • Cherry trees

You could also plant berry trees, but please consider that trees full of berries will attract birds.

Ornamental trees are another option to make your foliage stand out. These are trees grown for their aesthetic value, and are recognised by their bright colours and unique shapes.

Some examples of ornamental trees include:

  • Cherry ‘Kwanzan’ — a tree of ever-changing colour. The foliage emerges a ruby-bronze, fades to dark green and then transforms into a golden orange during autumn. It blossoms with vivid pink flowers.

  • Hydrangea Tree — this round tree features stunning pink flowers bursting out of rich green foliage.

  • Magnolia Royal star — this is a towering, regal tree that blooms white flowers. In autumn the tree produces a magnificent yellow-bronze colour.

How do I maintain my tree?

If your trees grow too large or show signs of diseases or decay, you’ll need to restore them to a healthy condition and size. Fruit trees should be pruned every 2-5 years to generate good crops and other trees may need regular pruning to maintain their shape or keep them away from power lines. A professional tree surgeon can offer a range of tree maintenance services to keep your garden in top condition. 

Services include:

  • Pruning and lopping — for controlling the size of the tree and helping it to grow in the right direction.

  • Felling — for removing the tree if it is badly diseased

  • Pollarding — for reducing the height of the tree

 


Artemis Tree Services is an award-winning tree surgeon business, recently winning the ‘Employer of the Year’ and ‘Arboriculture Contractor of the Year’ at the Horticulture Week Business Awards. We care about your trees, which is why we offer a range of tree maintenance services and advice to bring your dream garden to life. For tree surgery in Rickmansworth, Watford and the wider London area, give our team a call.

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Pools Sritharan

Excellent service from the initial contact to completion. Professional ans polite at all times. Many thanks for this wonderful experience. Regards Pools Sritharan 18, The Avenue, Potters Bar.... Excellent service from the initial contact to completion. Professional ans polite at all times. Many thanks for this wonderful experience. Regards Pools Sritharan 18, The Avenue, Potters Bar.

1 week ago

Wendy Fry

Very pleased with work done to prune large sycamore tree. Detailed quote provided same day as Billy came to inspect and advise. All work was done promptly, safely with no mess whatsoever. Would defini... Very pleased with work done to prune large sycamore tree. Detailed quote provided same day as Billy came to inspect and advise. All work was done promptly, safely with no mess whatsoever. Would definitely recommend this firm. Very professional from start to finish.

3 weeks ago

Chris Pooley

If you require any tree work done I can certainly recommend Artemis. The estimator Billy was great to deal with professional and gave great advice. We required a Laurel and Holly tree to be reduced i... If you require any tree work done I can certainly recommend Artemis. The estimator Billy was great to deal with professional and gave great advice. We required a Laurel and Holly tree to be reduced in height and shaped and several leylandia trees at the back of the garden to be reduced in height and tidied up.A detailed quote was provided within 24 hours. On the day of the scheduled work the crew arrived on time and Tom and Charlie did a fantastic job very courteous and making sure everything was left nice and tidy. I would have no hesitation in contacting them for any future work required this is an extremely well run business.

3 weeks ago

Wendy Farrell

Great service from the get go. Surveyor was brilliant and took his time advising me on the best value for money for the job. The two guys in the day were fab! Not a leaf was left for me to tidy up. K... Great service from the get go. Surveyor was brilliant and took his time advising me on the best value for money for the job. The two guys in the day were fab! Not a leaf was left for me to tidy up. Kirstie Harvey in the office is a legend! Cannot recommend this company highly enough.

1 month ago

Kirk Teasdale

Delighted with the work carried out by what I can only describe as absolute gentlemen. They were prompt, courteous and considerate through out. Would definitely recommend.... Delighted with the work carried out by what I can only describe as absolute gentlemen. They were prompt, courteous and considerate through out. Would definitely recommend.

1 month ago

Mark Stafford

As a retired arborist myself I cannot give this company higher praise. Reasonable quote for the work and their climber was very proffessional and worked in a safe manner. Site was spotless when they l... As a retired arborist myself I cannot give this company higher praise. Reasonable quote for the work and their climber was very proffessional and worked in a safe manner. Site was spotless when they left. All in all a very pleasant experience.

1 month ago

Anonymous

Everything was great from start to finish I highly recommend Artemis. From the initial quotation to the reminders and then the text on the day to say they were on their way everything was perfect. T... Everything was great from start to finish I highly recommend Artemis. From the initial quotation to the reminders and then the text on the day to say they were on their way everything was perfect. The chaps onsite were great, very polite and incredibly tidy. I am very happy with the standard of work and would definitely recommend.

1 month ago

Nick Woolford

From the initial contact through to the finished work, everything has gone smoothly and professionally. The estimator came when he said he would, gave us meaningful and thoughtful suggestions. His d... From the initial contact through to the finished work, everything has gone smoothly and professionally. The estimator came when he said he would, gave us meaningful and thoughtful suggestions. His detailed estimate was produced within hours of his visit. Once we had accepted the estimate we received planned date for the work. On the day the workmen arrived when we were told they would. They were extremely co-operative, helpful and informative. The work procedure without a hitch with everything being competed to a high standard, and all the refuse removed, leaving the garden neat and tidy. We will have Artemis back later in the year to prune the fruit trees.

2 months ago

Anonymous

A fantastic service, at good reasonable prices with total clearace of the site upon completion. Couldn't ask for more....

3 months ago

Anonymous

Just had a tree removed in Ruislip Manor, the guys were done and dusted in just over an hour, I was expecting a mess that I'd have to clean up once they left. The guys ensured everything was spo... Just had a tree removed in Ruislip Manor, the guys were done and dusted in just over an hour, I was expecting a mess that I'd have to clean up once they left. The guys ensured everything was spotless when they left. We're all happy, but my Cat missing the tree!

3 months ago

Asarthan

Great job start to finish. All contact smooth and easy. The team listened to everything we wanted and pulled it off to perfection. Very neat and tidy too! Thank you very much!... Great job start to finish. All contact smooth and easy. The team listened to everything we wanted and pulled it off to perfection. Very neat and tidy too! Thank you very much!

3 months ago

Pete W

Another year of great service from start to finish - highly recommended...

3 months ago

Louise Leahy

Excellent service from the beginning, all lovely staff at every point and the work was carried out tidily and with consultation along the way. Very accommodating. Highly recommend and would use again.... Excellent service from the beginning, all lovely staff at every point and the work was carried out tidily and with consultation along the way. Very accommodating. Highly recommend and would use again.

3 months ago

Gordon Smith

I was impressed with your quotation service. The paperwork was excellent. The team arrived on time and carried out the job expertly and in accordance with our wishes. They were very professional and c... I was impressed with your quotation service. The paperwork was excellent. The team arrived on time and carried out the job expertly and in accordance with our wishes. They were very professional and communicated with us at all time. We were very impressed with the whole service from start to finish.

3 months ago

Pam Hawkins

Marcin & Mo arrived bang on time. We discussed the schedule of works supplied with the estimate and agreed what was to be done. They worked well as a team, and had finished 2 of the 3 trees by lu... Marcin & Mo arrived bang on time. We discussed the schedule of works supplied with the estimate and agreed what was to be done. They worked well as a team, and had finished 2 of the 3 trees by lunch time. The 3rd was completed and all the rubbish raked up, shredded and removed a few hours later. My neighbours were happy with the work as any overhang into their gardens had been removed. I would thoroughly recommend Artemis and in particular the team that did my work. The quality of the workmanship is well worth the cost.

3 months ago

John Taylor

I would definitely recommend Artemis. Very professional, courteous and efficient. They did the job with the minimum of fuss and inconvenience and cleared up carefully and thoroughly. Their reliability... I would definitely recommend Artemis. Very professional, courteous and efficient. They did the job with the minimum of fuss and inconvenience and cleared up carefully and thoroughly. Their reliability makes them well worth the fee charged.

4 months ago

Anonymous

Marcin and Charlie did a great job with the tree works - efficient and very professional!...

4 months ago

Christine Forrest

I've used Artemis for many decades. We've always found them professional, tidy, courteous, considerate and easy to have around. They might not be the cheapest, but are well worth it and I gu... I've used Artemis for many decades. We've always found them professional, tidy, courteous, considerate and easy to have around. They might not be the cheapest, but are well worth it and I guess you get what you pay for. I wouldn't use or recommend any other company.

4 months ago

Anonymous

Aston and Tom arrived on time and went through the work specified, both were polite and finished the job within a short space of time. I would recommend Artemis to anyone without hesitation.... Aston and Tom arrived on time and went through the work specified, both were polite and finished the job within a short space of time. I would recommend Artemis to anyone without hesitation.

4 months ago

M A Haffner

Very efficient and tree removal was completed on time and in budget. The site was cleaned up beautifully....

5 months ago

Alex Wyatt

They were fantastically efficient, professional & friendly....

5 months ago