I’ve used DNR programs from their nursery before and a few of the hundreds I’ve planted around our farms didn’t make it.  But, most did and they look great.  I highly recommend considering them.  Keep in mind, the programs I used came a hundred trees at a time and were barely more than sticks with some roots hanging off them, but they’re quality trees and if you take care of them, I have no reason to believe they won’t do well.  I just got this email and wanted to share the program.  A lot of us have holes in the yard leftover from high winds and derecho, and this might be a great cure. 

I planted rows of Northern Pecan to shade my range from the afternoon sun with several rows of pines behind to cut down on noise pollution.  Properly chosen trees in strategic places around your range are welcome.  If one thing is for sure, a shady spot on hot range days is welcome.  Consider this a great source and option.  Take caution planting on the tops of berms as the risk of toppling wind is high but around the bases and lower edges of the outside berms?  Great options.  Shade, soil retention, great looks, and natural noise barriers?  All good stuff.  Thanks, Michael

DNR release below:

A woman planting a tree.

Plant a tree or two in your yard this spring. A mixture of hardwoods, low-growing ornamental and evergreen tree species are available for $25 each. Submit your order form today to reserve your trees to be picked up at the following locations:

  • Tuesday, April 26, 4:30-6:30 p.m., Chuck Gipp Decorah Fish Hatchery (2321 Siewers Spring Rd, Decorah)
  • Saturday, April 30, 8:30-10:30 a.m., Pioneer Ridge Nature Center (1339 US Hwy 63, Bloomfield)
  • Thursday, May 5, 4:30-6:30 p.m., Awaysis Park (1490 E Lakeshore Dr, Storm Lake)
  • Tuesday, May 17, 4:00-6:00 p.m., East Peterson Park (55756 180th St, Ames)

Learn more about the available tree species and order requirements on the DNR webpage.

To Save Big, Start Small

3 year old sycamore tree.

This sycamore tree was planted just three years ago as a tiny, knee-high sapling from the DNR state forest nursery in Ames. With a little patience, you can easily save up to several hundred dollars by planting seedlings versus larger, store-bought trees.

DNR nursery seedlings are 6 to 30 inches in height, but as the photo shows, they quickly explode in growth.

Order trees at iowadnr.gov/nursery or 515-233-1161.

Tips for picking the right tree for your yard

If you’re thinking of branching out and adding a new tree to your yard, keep these things in mind:

  • Start with research – Some species thrive under different conditions, so it’s always a good idea to study up on which trees would do the best in your yard.

  • Consider all your needs – Different trees have different benefits, such as quick growth and how much shade they’ll give.

  • Know what your yard has to offer – If you have heavy clay soil, you’ll want a tree that can handle wet conditions. A shorter tree is a great option for planting under power lines.

  • Find the best place to plant – Check out i-Tree Design to help you decide where a tree in your yard could help with energy efficiency in your house.

Learn more tips for selecting, planting and proper maintenance of trees on our Tree Resources and Links page.