Sustainable Columbus  
910 Dublin Road
Columbus, OH 43215 

Bryan M. Clark, MSEM
Chief Sustainability Officer
[email protected]

Erin Beck
Assistant Sustainability Officer
[email protected]

David Celebrezze
GreenSpot Coordinator
[email protected]

Native Tree Species

Child hugging a tree

Why should I consider planting native trees? 

While most trees provide benefits, such as shade for your home and shelter for wildlife, native trees are often the most beneficial and won’t become invasive like some non-native species. Plus, kids love trees! Keep reading to learn about the benefits of planting a native tree on your property. 

Raccoon in a tree
Native trees have friends  
A tree species that is native to a region has grown and adapted there for many generations, and the natural environment has adapted around it, too. Just as you prefer certain kinds of food and environments over others, birds and wildlife have their preferred foods and habitats. Oftentimes, these preferred plants are the ones native to the region. 

Large oak tree
Native trees are survivors 
Trees that are native to Ohio are well-adapted to withstand the weather that each season brings. (For central Ohio, think icy winters and hot, humid summers!) A native tree, when planted in its native zone, will be able to survive frosty winters, rainy springs, and sweltering summers. This means less maintenance for you in order to keep your tree beautiful and healthy. 

Pawpaw tree bloom
Native trees won’t misbehave 
Can a tree really misbehave? If you’ve ever planted something in your yard and then, a year later, you had way more of it than you wanted, you might believe that a tree can become an unwelcome inhabitant on your property. While most trees require some general upkeep from time-to-time, a native tree shouldn’t become a pest. Meanwhile, some non-native trees can become invasive or otherwise cause damage to an area by spreading very quickly and outcompeting with native plants.  

Maple leaves changing colors
Native trees are beautiful 
When you can choose from a long list of beneficial and beautiful trees that are well-adapted to your region in Ohio, why would you bother with a non-native tree? From the classically-shaped oak tree, to the purple-studded redbud, Ohio native trees offer so many attractive options for a beautiful addition to your property. 

Learn more about the 99 common native species of trees in Ohio by viewing this Ohio Division of Wildlife field guide.