Tree in a landscaped settingTrees can be very expensive to buy, and hard work to set out. The last thing anyone wants is to spend all that time, just to have replant more later. What's worst, is having cut them down at a latter time. So where does one pick the best spots for planting trees, and just where does one not plant them?

Decide what needs you have for your trees? Beauty, wind breakers, shade or to draw in squirrels or birds? Write down what is important to you. Buy trees that fit your needs. Do you want trees that stay green all year long? Is it important not to have a yard full of pine cones or full of pine needles? Or would you rather not be bothered with having to rake leaves. Take in consideration all the stages of a trees life, and the climate you live in. Magnolia trees are beautiful. My neighbor has one, but the frost gets it nearly every year. Fruit trees can draw in birds, this can be a nuisance. Many trees can leave sap on your cars, so you will want to avoid planting any near your driveway if you do not park in a garage. Draw a diagram of your lot, if it helps. Take it to the

Don't plant trees under utility lines, including phone or cable lines. This is just a disaster waiting to happen. If the company lets you keep it there, you will either be forced to cut it down later, or see it trimmed down to nothing once it reaches maturity. However, if the tree is a dwarf or doesn't grow over 20 feet high, then utility lines shouldn't be a problem.

Before you start digging, have the water, gas and any other company come, and mark the underground lines. Also know where your septic line is as well. It's not just the overhead lines you have to worry about. Your trees will have to be planted several feet away, depending on the type. You will need to research the mature root width before planting that particular tree near these lines. Check with your phone company or local utility offices for a number to call before you dig.

Do not plant trees near the highway. There is nothing worst than not being able to see out of a drive by a tree. Even if it's not blocking your view, doesn't mean it isn't blocking your neighbors. Trees are also known to block road signs. Do not plant a tree near a road sign.

Avoid planting trees where herbicides are used. These can damage the tree's root system and kill it.

Do not plant trees around sidewalks or patios of any kind, street or your own. The roots can buckle the cement, and the branches are annoying to the people trying to use the sidewalk.

Avoid planting trees to close to the neighbor's lot. If part of your tree falls onto their house, you will be responsible for the damages. Also avoid planting fruit and nut trees near property lines or in the yard. The mower can throw a nut and seriously injure someone, knock out a window, or ruin a mower. Plus it can hurt bare feet.

Do not plant trees around pond banks if you live in a dry area. I know it looks lovely, but that tree will suck up all the water it can get it's little roots on.

Avoid planting a tree to close to the house. This can damage the foundation.

Pick an open area, free of obstacles, above and below ground to plant trees. Research tree varieties, and pick a species that fits your needs. Don't buy a tree then try to place it. Buy what suits your needs, not what you want.