Salt Lake City

Public Lands Department

Urban Forestry Utah Native Trees

White Fir
Abies concolor
Large evergreen tree that performs best in moist, cool, protected sites. Shade tolerant. Needs protection to do well if plating area is windy and exposed. Does not like high soil pH. Beautiful landscape addition in favorable location.

Rocky Mountain Maple
Acer glabrum
Small deciduous tree best suited to protected mountain streams. Shade tolerant. This shrubby tree is rarely available in nurseries and seldom planted in urban landscapes. Warm valley locations in marked contrast to its preferred habitat.

Bigtooth Maple
Acer grandidentatum
This is the maple that gives Utah foothills and mountains their outstanding fall color. Tolerates high soil pH better than many maples. Intermediate shade tolerance. Suited to our climatic and appears to withstand some drought when planted in the valley.

Acer negundo
A tough large deciduous tree that thrives in moist, deep soils but will also grow on poor soils and stressful sites. Intermediate shade tolerance. Can be weak wooded. Highly adaptable and well suited for wildlife habitat. Box elder bugs have an appetite for seeds from female Box elder trees.

Amelanchier utahensis
Small tree particularly well suited to mountain canyons. Stature is shrubby usually remaining below 15′ in height. Multi-stemmed round growth habit. Well-drained soils and partial sun is preferred. Birds are attracted to its fruit and mule deer browse its foliage.

Netleaf Hackberry
Celtis reticulata
Small deciduous tree suited to dry foothills and valley locations. Intermediate shade tolerance. Well suited to low-water use landscapes. Slow to moderate growth rate.

Mountain Mahogany
Cercocarpus ledifolius
Broadleaf evergreen found primarily at high-open mountain settings. Shrubby in youth but has potential for large broad shape. Long-lived and slow-growing. Important species for wildlife. Shade intolerant. Seldom used in urban landscapes, but if available would be a welcome addition to the urban landscape. Tolerant of drought.

Desert Willow
Chilopsis linearis
Best suited to warm locations along streams in southwestern Utah. This small shrubby tree is not a true willow but could be used more as small ornamental if temperatures do not get too cold. Shade intolerant.

Douglas Hawthorn
Crataegus douglasii
A small slow growing shrubby deciduous tree with thorns. Good fall color and well suited for riparian wildlife restoration projects. Shade intolerant. Unusual in cultivated landscapes.

Utah Juniper
Juniperus osteosperma
Very tolerant of drought, cold, heat and a wide variety of soil conditions. Shrub-like growth habitat generally smaller than 15′ tall. Shade intolerant. Well suited to low-water and low-maintenance landscapes.

Rocky Mountain Juniper
Juniperus scopulorum
Larger and more upright compared to Utah Juniper. Highly drought resistant. Shade intolerant. Good choice for visual screening, noise buffering, windbreak and adaptability to variety of planting locations.

Engelmann Spruce
Picea engelmannii
Large slow growing evergreen. Performs best in cool, moist, favorable soils Shade tolerant. Uncommon and not well suited to low elevation, warm, or dry locations.

Blue Spruce
Picea pungens
State tree of Utah. Large at maturity. Needs plenty of space to grow, favorable soil, and frequent irrigation. Beautiful variations in color available due to waxy coating of foliage.

Bristlecone Pine
Pinus longaeva
Slow growing and can be very long-lived: some reported to be over 4,000 years old. Tolerant of dry, tough sites but does not do well in shade. Growth habit can be contorted. Great selection for low water and low maintenance landscapes

Lodgepole Pine
Pinus contorta
Large high elevation slow growing evergreen. Can from thick stands in native areas. Shade intolerant and moderately drought tolerant. Could be used where a natural, low maintenance landscape is preferred.

Pinyon Pine
Pinus edulis
Primary and historic component of Utah’s pinyon pine-juniper forest. Small drought tolerant evergreen that produces seeds relished by wildlife and people alike. Well suited to low water, low maintenance, and landscapes that replicate natural settings.

Ponderosa Pine
Pinus ponderosa
Large slow growing evergreen with distinctive cinnamon-colored bark-plates, large cones, and long pine-needles. Possible alternative to more commonly planted Austrian pine.

Narrowleaf Cottonwood
Populus angustifolia
Large deciduous tree with narrow leaves. Native to riparian corridors. Prefers full sun and alluvial soil.

Fremont Cottonwood
Populus fremontii
Very large historic broad-leafed deciduous tree that thrives along water courses. Females can produce considerable amount of cottony-seeds.

Populus tremuloides
One of Utah’s most populous and beautiful trees. Does best in cool, moist, mountain locations in the company of other aspens. Distinctive bark, foliage, and fall color. Not a long-lived species.

Prunus virginiana
Usually small tree or shrub-like with multiple stems. Highly adaptable but prefers alluvial and moist soils. Attractive flowers are followed by fleshy fruits desired by wildlife. Like aspen can regenerate from sprouts and form thickets given favorable conditions and time.

Douglas Fir
Pseudotsuga menziesii
Large evergreen historically used for timber production but with great potential for beautiful addition to urban landscapes where space for growth and water is provided. Not a true fir.

Oak Gambel
Quercus gambelii
Also known as scrub oak this species is most prevalent along the foothills where it provides great fall color, typically forming thickets that are resilient to adverse weather and tolerant of drought. It also is well-suited to urban landscapes where it can grow to be large in size and vibrancy with irrigation provided.

Peachleaf Willow
Salix amygdaloides
Growth habit is usually small, shrubby, multi-stemmed. Found near water. Very shade intolerant. Well suited to riparian restoration and wildlife habitat improvement projects.