Living in the desert can be highly appealing as it offers a pleasant, dry climate with plenty of sunshine. Now there are so many places offering air conditioning becoming, the numbers of individuals living in such areas are increasing.
However, keeping trees and other vegetation alive in the desert can be difficult. It’s critical to choose desert shade trees that will grow in your garden if you want to improve your home’s curb appeal and give color and life to your yard.
Besides this, an evergreen desert tree can offer enormous amounts of shade to offer a welcome respite when relaxing in the garden.
In our guide, you can learn more about fast growing shade trees; Arizona offers a few, but which are the best for your garden can take a little thinking about.
By the end, you’ll have a better understanding of which fast-growing shade trees provide ample shade as well as enhance your garden landscape. Along the way will be a few tips here and there on how to get the best from your shade trees. (Learn How To Hang String Lights In Backyard Without Trees)
What Is A Fast Growing Shade Tree For Arizona?
Because of the high heat and extensive sun exposure in Arizona, shade is necessary. Fortunately, several fast-growing shade trees will thrive in Arizona’s climate.
These drought-tolerant fast-growing shade trees are native trees of the southern United States, so it is well-versed in dealing with Arizona’s scorching summers. Homeowners frequently choose these popular trees for a variety of reasons.
The Cypress tree sheds little, provide shade, and can be used as a Christmas tree. The Cypress grows at a rate of 18 inches per year, and tree size can be a height of 50 feet. It needs direct sunlight for at least six hours per day.
Although this tree is not a true weeping willow, The Willow Acacia grows tall and has long, “weeping” branches. It can withstand drought and grow up to three feet per year.
When fully mature, it can grow to be between 20 and 40 feet tall. Although tree care is minimum, and it is a low-maintenance tree, tree care needs to be done by a skilled landscaper to avoid falling over or becoming injured. (Read What Is The Best Fertilizer For Evergreen Trees?)
Chilean Mesquite (Prosopis Chilensis)
In Arizona and other Southwestern states, the Chilean Mesquite is one of the most frequent desert trees. The Chilean mesquite tree grows quickly and can reach a mature size of 46 feet. In early winter, with slightly cold temperatures, the desert tree produces yellowish puffy flowers with long, pinnate-shaped leaves.
Like the Desert Willow, the Chilean Mesquite is a brilliant choice for individuals looking for a tree with a lot of slender, spreading leaves and drooping limbs. These hardy trees are native to South America, but they thrive in any environment that allows for drought-tolerant growth.
Chilean Mesquites can be used as shade trees or for adornment. Your Chilean Mesquite tree should be planted in full light. Give the Chilean Mesquite roots a good soak when you water them, but between waterings, allowing the tree to dry out. The Chilean Mesquite is a semi-evergreen tree that sheds its leaves regularly.
Palo Verde (Parkinsonia aculeata)
The Palo Verde tree is the state tree of Arizona, but there are multiple species. The Palo Verde tree is also known as the Jerusalem thorn or the jellybean tree. One of the greatest selections for a fast-growing tree is the Desert Museum Palo Verde. It is the fastest-growing Palo Verde species and provides a wide canopy for shade.
Palo Verde is a lovely desert tree with a multi-branch structure and brilliant green leaves. During the dry season, the leaves of this deciduous tree fall off. This drought-resistant tree can thrive in a wide range of conditions.
This lovely multi-trunked deciduous tree reaches a height of around twenty feet when fully grown. Even better, the Palo Verde blooms in beautiful white and yellow flowers every year, bringing color and liveliness to your yard. (Learn How To Keep Christmas Tree Alive)
Palo Verde seedpods can contain anywhere from one to eight seeds. It is a slow-growing tree that, with the right conditions, can live for centuries.
Palo Verde should be planted in coarse, well-drained soil. Your Palo Verde tree thrives in full sunlight and is a fast-growing tree, so monitor it and replenish any nutrients that have been lost.
Blue Palo Verde (Cercidium floridum)
The Blue Palo Verde, like the Foothills Palo Verde, is an excellent choice for a deciduous desert tree to brighten up your garden. The blue-green branches of the Blue Palo Verde give it its name, and it gives a delicate pastel tint to your environment.
Your fast-growing shade trees grow significantly taller than their green cousin, reaching a mature height of around forty feet. Because the Blue Palo Verde prefers finer soil than the Foothills variety, make sure your potting soil is adjusted accordingly.
It also prefers regular watering, making it appropriate for hot climates in Southern Arizona with some rainfall.
The Arizona Ash tree is a fast-growing, wide-spreading tree that can reach a height of 30 feet. It’s a deciduous shade tree that keeps its leaves for most of the year, especially in the summer. The Arizona Ash tree can provide you with plenty of new shade in no time.
What Tree Is The Least Messy?
Desert trees can withstand challenging, hot, arid conditions and extreme drought while still producing leaves and, sometimes, fruit.
The desert biome is an ecosystem that is characterized by desert environments, sandy soil, and low rainfall. To collect rainwater and keep it in the trunk, trees that flourish in a desert environment require vast root systems.
If you live in desert climates like Southern Arizona, planting drought-tolerant trees in your backyard might provide you with much-needed shade.
Growing desert trees in your backyard are simple if you live in a desert climate. Desert plants require sandy, well-draining soil and full sun to thrive. Once established, thorough irrigation is required regularly to keep the roots moist. You may need to irrigate desert trees every week to ten days in regions like Arizona during the summer. (Learn How To Prune Palm Trees)
Arizona Rosewood (Vauquelinia californica)
A shrubby evergreen small tree that grows to 10 feet and thrives in full sun or mild shade. In the late spring, you’ll find clusters of creamy white flowers.
Desert Ironwood Tree (Olneya tesota)
The ironwood tree is one of the most remarkable, tiny desert trees. The leaves of this evergreen tree, which is endemic to the Sonoran Desert, are a bluish-green color.
The ironwood tree can be grown as a desert bush or a small shade tree with proper pruning. Purple and crimson blossoms beautiful flowers light up this desert tree in the early summer.
Musclewood and hornbeam are two more names for this desert tree. These common names refer to the hardwood that the tree produces. Plant the desert landscape tree where it will get some shade if you live in a scorching climate.
Desert Willow (Chilopsis linearis)
The willow is a suitable alternative for partial shade in a desert area if you’re searching for a tiny, bush-like tree. Although the leaves of this desert tree resemble those of willow, it is not a true weeping willow. The tree thrives in desert settings and is drought resistant.
The big, brilliant, showy flowers of this desert tree are its most appealing characteristic. The magenta or purple blossoms of these trumpet-shaped blooms offer beauty and color to arid environments.
African Sumac (Rhus lancea)
The African sumac tree is a drought-resistant, tiny bushy desert tree. This tree, native to African deserts, offers a shade canopy and can be pruned to maintain a small size. Let the trees grow to attain their standard height of 20 to 30 feet if you want a dense shade tree in your yard.
Every year, the tiny pine-like leaves fall, causing a mess. The fallen leaves can be collected and used as mulch in your garden. The tree blooms every year, but the blossoms are small and unnoticeable.
Boojum Tree (Fouquieria columnaris)
The ocotillo tree, also known as the Boojum tree, is one of the oddest desert trees on this list since it resembles a giant cactus. The Sonora Desert is home to this variety of desert plants. The branching and bending of this tree can be surprising. At the top of the large succulent main branch, secondary branches sprout.
In the desert, these unusual-looking trees can reach heights of 70 feet. In the summer and fall, their creamy white flowers with honey smells bloom.
Texas Mountain Laurel (Dermatophyllum secundiflorum)
The Texas mountain laurel is a little desert tree that grows well in arid environments. You can keep this tree as a flowering shrub, depending on how well you care for it. Because of its evergreen leaves, the little tree does not make a mess. The slow-growing tree is native to the southwestern United States and Mexico’s deserts. The slow-growing trees are low-maintenance; the heat-tolerant shrub has lovely purple to lavender flowers that can brighten up a desert garden in the spring.
The sun-loving bushy tree appears to thrive in a variety of severe environments. It thrives in poor soil and requires only a small amount of water to develop foliage and blossoms.
Sissoo (Dalbergia sissoo)
This desert tree, sometimes known as North Indian rosewood, develops swiftly in full light and high weather. The tree resembles aspen and provides a pleasant shade for extensive desert gardens. This drought-resistant tree reaches 82 feet, and the deciduous tree features leathery leaves and bright green foliage.
This desert tree produces a considerable number of fragrant small pink or white flower clusters in the early spring. Before you plant this tree for shade in an arid yard, remember that it can be an untidy tree with roots that might damage adjacent buildings or walkways.
Texas Mountain Laurel (Dermatophyllum secundiflorum)
The Texas Mountain Laurel could be just what you’re looking for. This slow-growing tree thrives in hot, arid climates and can be found in Mexican deserts and the Southwest United States. The beautiful lavender, purple and red flowers of the Mountain Laurel brighten up any garden.
Plant your Texas Mountain Laurel in poor soil, as the tree thrives in challenging conditions. The soil around the tree should be well-drained, and you should only prune the tree if you have no other option. Although the Texas Mountain Laurel likes full sun, it may also thrive in partial shade.
Desert Museum Palo Verde (Cercidium x ‘Desert Museum’)
You won’t find a tree that better blends the best attributes of the Palo tree kinds than the Desert Museum Palo Verde. Like the Foothills Palo Verde, the Desert Museum Palo Verde preserves a low profile and never grows taller than 25 feet.
The Desert Museum has a bonus: every spring; it explodes into gigantic, golden yellow flowers.
Plant the Desert Museum Palo Verde native trees in poor, well-drained soil. Water the new tree regularly until it takes root, then only occasionally. When you water the tree, give the roots a good soak, and check the pH of the soil to see if it needs to be adjusted.
Chaste Tree (Vitex agnus-castus)
The Vitex tree, often known as the Chaste tree, is a beautiful addition to any desert landscape. The tree’s stunning purple, pink, and white blossoms have a wonderful, sweet scent and dark green foliage that offers a burst of brilliant color to your yard. The Chaste is a native of China, although it thrives in various hot, dry climates and is easy to care for.
Plant your Chaste tree in full sun with well-drained soil. Water the tree now and then during its first growth, but after it’s established, you won’t need to water it at all. When caring for your Chaste tree, only use inorganic mulch.
Ironwood (Olneya tesota)
When you’re looking for a little tree to fit into a small desert garden, the Ironwood tree could be just what you’re looking for. Ironwood is also known as Musclewood and Hornbeam for its wood strength and resistance to splits and cracks. You won’t find a more suitable tree for carving, and its attractive appearance will brighten your yard.
Ironwood can grow in various desert regions, but it prefers cold temperatures to other drought-resistant desert trees. If you’re planting Ironwood in extreme heat, give it some light shade from other trees to protect it from the sun. In early summer, purple and red flowers brighten up your desert tree.
Sand Palm (Allagoptera Arenaria)
You can’t go wrong with the Sand palm if you want a lovely palm tree that will fit in a tiny location. This little tree has all the benefits of a gigantic palm tree, such as beauty and shade, but it only grows to around six feet tall, making it ideal for small spaces and borders.
The Sand palm prefers full sun, although it can also thrive in partial shade. The Sand palm, as its name suggests, prefers sandy soil with adequate drainage. Water your young Sand palm while it is growing, and then water it regularly when it has taken root. If the temperature in your area often goes below 28°F in the winter, grow this tree in a container and bring it indoors during the colder months.