flatbusherApril 16, 2012

I need a recommendation for a very small hypoallergenic tree. It's for a small spot in front of my house , there's a space between the walkway and a concrete porch. Is there any tree that would provide some color? Either colorful leaves or blossoms. (could be a fruit tree)

It's got to be very small and it's got to be non-alleregenic.

(Not an evergreen type of tree , the base is too wide).

much appreciated

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You're looking for an insect pollinated tree....the pollen grains are larger and not free floating as they are for wind pollinated trees

The potential list is huge!
magnolia, redbud, and dogwood are just three of many

    Bookmark   April 16, 2012 at 5:28PM
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Define small. Do you mean a small footprint (e.g.: you don't want an evergreen; do you mean a small trunk?), or a short tree? This matters, because a 'small' (short tree) is apt to have the canopy down in your face. A 'medium' tree might have a trunk big around as your leg, but eventually get tall enough to limb up the trunk so you can walk under it. Is there a size requirement on the canopy of the tree (say, not over 10 feet wide; or 20?)?

What are the rough horizontal dimensions of this strip of ground between concrete porch & walkway where it's to be planted?

Is this walkway a side-walk, that the tree might not root past underneath (I don't know how likely that is), or is it a paving stone walkway, in which case you might have a lot more potential rooting area to support your tree.

What USDA Zone are you in?

I have no idea whether it's hypoallergenic or whether it'd handled your winters, but just to throw a small, colorful option out there to get a sense of your tastes, take a look at a Fireglow Japanese Maple tree. Is that sort of burgundy red through the spring, summer & fall the kind of color you seek?


    Bookmark   April 16, 2012 at 6:29PM
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thanks for your input
I'm in zone 6
the space is only a few feet wide, it's a sidewalk on one side
the canopy should definitely be less than 10 feet wide
the fireglow's nice , but maybe a fruit tree?

    Bookmark   April 17, 2012 at 6:00PM
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jimbobfeeny(5a IN)

You could try Pawpaw - quite interesting, definitely underused. It gets pretty, yellow fall colors and a strange-looking fruit that looks a bit like a green sweet potato and tastes similar to bananas. It has a pyramidal form, and is pollinated by beetles - hypoallergenic. The only drawback is a tendency to sucker when in poorer soils.

    Bookmark   April 17, 2012 at 6:09PM
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Fruit trees can make a mess on patios, decks, sidewalks, etc... If you look at fruit trees, from what I understand, for good production plum trees need another tree of a different variety of their species for cross pollination, but peach trees do not.

Fruit trees can be disease prone and not real long-lived. Ornamental fruit trees often don't produce significant edible fruit. For example, Bonfire Patio Peach Trees are small and cute but you won't be eating the fruits.


    Bookmark   April 17, 2012 at 8:09PM
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alexander3_gw(6 Pennsylvania)

Asian Persimmon would be a great choice. They are quite ornamental, stay small, produce fruit without a pollinator. Most produce seedless fruit because they do not make male flowers, so no pollen. They are just about the most trouble free fruit around, you can get flawless fruit with no spraying at all, and they can live a long time. Even better, the fruit hang on to the tree for a long time, so they won't be dropping on your sidewalk making a mess. In fact, the fruit usually hang on even after the leaves drop, leaving a beautiful sight of a fruit tree full of orange fruit.

Several varieties are hardy to zone 6. 'Great Wall' is among the more compact, but the fruit are astringent until soft. 'Ichi ki kei jiro' is another small one that makes non-astringent fruit. Head over the the fruit forum for more variety suggestions.

How much sun does the spot get?


    Bookmark   April 17, 2012 at 9:00PM
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hortster(6a, southcentral KS)

"Hypoallergenic" usually means "female" tree. Pollen from male trees creates most allergies. Regardless of the size, regardless of whether it produces fruit or not - do not get a pollen producing tree.
Fruit trees that produce fruit are pollinated. The several suggested may be both male and female on the same tree, which means that pollen is produced by the tree, lest it would not produce fruit. Pollen is the allergin.
Many people have asked me for trees that are hypoallerginic. In the same breath they have said that they don't like messy trees, meaning they don't want seeds or fruit. Female, not the male (allerginic) trees produce seeds and/or fruit. One goes with the other.
Simply stated, get a female tree of whatever species. Forget the fruit.

    Bookmark   April 17, 2012 at 9:42PM
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Comparing pollen grains from wind versus insect pollinated trees is like comparing dust to fine sand....the allergenic potential of the larger grains is negligible.

Only 6% of all angiosperms (flowering plants) are dioecious (plants are either male or female) need to restrict your choice this way.

Insect pollinated species are generally identified by larger flower structures and/or produce a scent that evolved to attract insects.

Check back with us if you need information on a particular species/variety you like.

    Bookmark   April 18, 2012 at 9:53AM
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Embothrium(USDA 8 Sunset 5 WA)

Usually with allergies there are specific kinds of things that produce allergies in each individual. For example, last time I was tested it was determined that I am bothered by poplar and privet, in addition to the already well-established grass allergy. If it is known what plants need to be avoided in your situation you may be able to plant a whole bunch of other kinds and not experience difficulty.

    Bookmark   April 18, 2012 at 12:00PM
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alexander3_gw(6 Pennsylvania)

>Fruit trees that produce fruit are pollinated. The several suggested may be both
>male and female on the same tree, which means that pollen is produced by the
>tree, lest it would not produce fruit. Pollen is the allergin

I guess this is partially in response to my suggestion of persimmon. There are several varieties of persimmon that produce only female flowers, and produce fruit even in the absence of pollination. They are described as parthenocarpic. The fruit are seedless.


    Bookmark   April 18, 2012 at 1:58PM
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thanks, everyone.
pawpaw and the fireglow sounds good.

    Bookmark   April 24, 2012 at 3:31PM
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I have severe allergies to tree pollen, so I have done quite a bit of research on this topic. What I have learned is that you want trees with complete flowers. These types of trees produce heavier pollen that does not get blown around by the wind but has to be spread by insects. Some good examples of small trees with complete flowers are red buds, crab apples, crape myrtle, and dogwood trees. Below is a URL that is helpful. Just copy and paste it into your address field. You can also do an internet search on "allergy-free trees." I hope this helps.

    Bookmark   April 24, 2012 at 6:16PM
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