Evergreens for zone 8 are relatively easy ones to grow, and this region contains the states of Alabama, Florida, Louisiana, Coastal Oregon, California, Arizona, Texas, Arkansas, and several more.
Where the climate of this region would have hot temperate summers, pleasant fall and spring temperatures, and cool winters.
Every usda zone has several appropriate evergreen trees and shrubs that can be an ideal addition to your landscape, and this zone is no different. This article lists the most suitable evergreen trees to grow in zone 8.
Types of Evergreens for Zone 8 Landscapes
1. Southern Magnolia
Mangolia grandiflora, also known as Southern Magnolia or blue bay, is an evergreen tree. The tree is indigenous to the southeastern parts of the United States.
Southern magnolias are ornamental flowering trees with large white, showy blooms that add to the beauty of their surroundings. The southern magnolia is one of the two evergreen magnolia species that can be found all year long.
There are several varieties of the southern magnolia, some of which can grow as tall as 80 feet. The tree has large, broad, and glossy evergreen foliage.
From spring to summer, the tree produces fragrant white blossoms and brilliant red seeds that are incredibly decorative. In the south, the southern magnolia plant is perfect for evergreen landscaping in parks, backyards, and even commercial spaces.
Several varieties of southern magnolia were recently developed to manage the size while retaining the tree’s attractive features. On the one hand, there are small southern magnolia varieties known as “dwarf types” which come more of shorter in their version.
These are appropriate for small backyard spaces because they don’t grow much taller than 30 feet. An example of the dwarf type variety of the southern magnolia is the magnolia Grandiflora ‘little gem’.
On the other hand, the larger varieties of the southern magnolia plant known as ‘Bracken’s Brown Beauty’ can be grown if space is not a problem. However, these large varieties can grow as tall as 50 feet.
– Growth Requirements
Southern Magnolia trees are easy to grow and maintain, and they would take up to 20 years to reach full maturity, so more patience is required to see these evergreens in all their glory. The trees have a widespread, and as a result, should be adequately spaced.
On another note, planting underneath them isn’t a good option, as the branches can grow really close to the ground and shade whatever is underneath them.
Southern Magnolia trees should be planted in late spring or early fall to get the best results. They perform well in partial shade and sometimes full sun conditions if the soil is nutrient-rich, moist, and well-drained. Likewise, the soil has to have an acidic pH for the tree to grow well.
2. Leyland Cypress
Leyland Cypress, is also commonly known as leylandii, is an evergreen usually grown in gardens worldwide. The trees have a fast growth rate and are shaped like cones with fragrant needle-like leaves.
The dark green leaves are tiny and flaky and have light green undersides. Its seeds are produced in small, round cones that hang from the branches of the tree.
The sterile form of Leyland Cypress is typically grown as an ornamental plant for Christmas due to its vastness.
On another note, the trees are typically grown in gardens as privacy screens and hedges, and this is because they are generally wide-spreading trees and can grow as tall as 60 feet. The trees are cut down and decorated with colorful lights in various homes during the festive season.
– Growth Requirements
Leyland Cypress grows well in hardiness zone 8, although this tree can grow in any zone between six and 10. It thrives under total sun exposure, not to forget that it does well in partial shaded conditions too.
The tree can grow in a variety of soil types as long as they’re moist, rich, and well-drained. Soils with an acidic pH are best for planting Leyland Cypress trees.
The ideal time to plant Leyland Cypress trees is in the middle of fall, while its seeds are dormant. Once it is planted, this trees grow quickly and reach maturity in relatively little time. This Cypress trees require little maintenance and little to no care as long as they’re watered regularly and are grown in the right soil conditions.
The trees grow in a rounded or cone shape, so pruning is not really necessary. However, you can prune them to whatever height or shape you want without causing any harm and it will grow more.
3. Green Giant Arborvitae
Thuja standishii × plicata, commonly known as Green giant Arborvitae or Green Giant, is a fast-growing hybrid plant that does well in growing zone 8.
It came about as a cross between T. plicata and the T. standishii. These two species are commonly known as the western red cedar and the Japanese Arborvitae. Green Giant Arborvitae is similar in looks to Emerald Green Arborvitae.
Even thought, both these trees are different varieties of the same plant. The emerald green arborvitae plants are smaller and more compact. The biggest emerald green arborvitae would be able to grow only as tall as 12 feet and as broad as four feet. As a result, they are better suited to small spaces.
On the other hand, the green giant arborvitaes are the larger variety and, as such, are perfect for large spaces that need to be filled up. They can grow up to 40 feet tall and 20 feet wide.
Green Giant Arborvitae are cold hardy (this means that they can survive in very low temperatures). The trees are cone-shaped and grow shiny, densely packed leaves that resemble fans.
Once fully grown, green giant arborvitae serves as an excellent windbreaker and can be grown as protective screens or as hedges. Unlike many other evergreen leaves that turn brown during winter, their leaves only darken slightly.
The tree is mostly pest and disease-resistant. On another note, you must take into consideration that when it is placed in poor soils, especially water-logged soils, scales, rots, and bag worms can be a problem.
– Growth Requirements
Green Giant grows perfectly in full sunlight. However, they also thrive under partial shade, especially during scorching summers.
While Green Giant is best planted in moist, nutrient-packed, loamy soils, it can thrive in a variety of other soil times as it is a hardy plant. The tree does well in all pH ranges, from acidic to alkaline soil pH.
Green Giants are hardy, low-maintenance trees, a little trimming here and there will keep your trees in good shape and give them a beautiful aesthetic. Also, proper spacing is essential when planting them-about three to five inches apart is ideal.
4. Pineapple Guava
Feijoa sellowiana, popularly known as Pineapple Guava, an evergreen flowering tree, is indigenous to several parts of North America. The plant can be referred to as a tree or shrub, as it doesn’t grow very tall. As a result, it is perfect for small spaces and can be grown in medium-sized pots.
The largest pineapple guava can only grow as high as 23 feet. It is primarily grown for its flavorful and sweet-smelling fruits and decorative purposes.
Pineapple Guava, also known as Feijoa or guavasteen, produces beautiful edible flowers and fruits that develop and ripen between May and August. The showy white flowers with bright red accents can be eaten right off the tree or used to decorate salads and drinks.
– Growth Requirements
Pineapple Guavas have a plant hardiness zone between 8 and 10, as they would grow well in full sun conditions. However, they prefer a little shade in areas with really hot summers. Plant them in well-draining nutrient-rich soils with neutral to slightly acidic pH ranges for the best results.
Growing pineapple Guava is easy, even for the most inexperienced gardener. The trees do not require vigorous care and maintenance, in addition, you must note that it is advantageous because it is resistant to most pests and diseases.
5. American Holly
Ilex opaca, also known as American holly, Inkberry, or Winterberry, is an evergreen perennial found commonly in the eastern and south-central parts of the United States. The trees have broad evergreen leaves and can grow as tall as 98 feet and as wide as 66 feet. They produce small, greenish-white flowers in spring.
One interesting fact about the American holly tree is that it is used as a Christmas decoration during the festive period. The tree takes a long time to reach maturity, so patience and persistence are required when growing it.
– Growth Requirements
American Holly prefers full sun to partial shade conditions. The trees grow dense, thick foliage when exposed to full sunlight, while the foliage won’t grow as thick as it ideally would in shady conditions. However, to get the best results, you must grow it under exposure to direct sunlight for about six hours and in partial shade in extremely hot summer afternoons.
The tree does best in well-drained, acidic soil, which means the pH should b between 3.5 to 6.0. However, you must note that if the soil’s pH is poor, you can adjust it with an acidifying fertilizer, so that it gets in the best soil conditions regarding the acidity. This will help boost your soil pH while also boosting the growth of your tree.
American Holly requires so little maintenance once it reaches maturity. Whereas when they are still young, the tree needs to be watered frequently, but not to the point of being water-logged, because this would hinder the growth and the sustenance.
When planting these trees, proper spacing is required to make sure they don’t become choked and compete for nutrients as they grow.
Bare-root planting isn’t advised for American Holly’s, because they don’t do well planted that way. While these trees are tough trees, it’s best to plant them out of reach of harsh winter winds. In addition, note that they are mostly resistant to pests, so there are no issues on that front.
Also, pruning is not necessary; however, you can shave some branches off if they become too extended or if you want to create a beautiful hedge.
Knowing your hardness zone for planting is very important when choosing the plants or trees to grow in your garden. Hardiness zone 8 has a variety of evergreen trees that grow well in the area.
If you live around this zone, the trees listed in this post are just a few of the options you can choose from, here are some things you should remember when making a tree choice for your landscape:
- Most evergreen trees or shrubs can be planted as windbreakers, ornamental trees, hedges, or privacy screens. To make the best choice of tree, you should consider what you need it for.
- Evergreens offer greenery to your garden or backyard all year round. As a result, you should consider planting other ornamental plants with them to improve the contrast and beautify your landscape.
- Like other trees and shrubs, evergreens will attract birds and other wildlife. This is important to note when making a choice.
- Evergreen trees and shrubs can grow as tall as 90 feet or as short as 20 feet, but most of them require very little care and maintenance.
- Proper spacing is essential in growing evergreen trees or shrubs to avoid choking and unnecessary competition.
Planting any of the listed evergreen trees in this article will provide you with the shade or privacy you need while adding beauty to your landscape.
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