In addition to flowering plants and shrubs, some of the fastest-growing trees in Indiana may be your best bet to adorn your landscape. They produce lush green leaves that will provide shade, while a few trees also grow flowers and fruits you can consume during the fruiting season. Even cooler, they are generally low-maintenance, making them easier to care for.
If you consider growing some fastest-growing trees for your Indiana lawns, you better look at our collection first! We include oaks, conifers, birches, and maples you can select based on your preferences. In case you favor greeneries, choose conifers. And for those who prefer colorful foliage in the fall, maples and birches will be a perfect pick! Let’s dive in!
Table of Contents
- 1. Eastern White Pine (Pinus strobus)
- 2. Hackberry (Celtis occidentalis)
- 3. Leyland Cypress
- 4. Northern Catalpa (Catalpa speciosa)
- 5. Northern Red Oak
- 6. Norway Spruce (Picea abies)
- 7. Pin Oak (Quercus palustris)
- 8. Quaking Aspen (Populus tremuloides)
- 9. River Birch (Betula nigra)
- 10. Silver Maple (Acer saccharinum)
- 11. Sugar Maple (Acer saccharum)
- 12. Tulip Tree (Liriodendron)
- 13. Weeping Willow (Salix babylonica)
- FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)
1. Eastern White Pine (Pinus strobus)
It is impossible not to include the Eastern White Pine tree or Pinus strobus in the list of fastest-growing trees to grow on Indiana lawns. This native tree can grow a 50 to 80 feet tall straight trunk with 100 to 180 cm in diameter, a huge tree to cover the land from the sun. It has needle-like foliage that forms a pyramidal shape when young and turns into a conical crown that is a bit rounded to flatten with horizontal and ascending branches as it ages.
Furthermore, this medium-size conifer grows naturally in dry, rocky, and sandy soil types under full sun. Nonetheless, it performs best in moist, well-drained soil and cool, humid climates. Despite being frost-hardy and moderately drought-tolerant, this fast-growing evergreen tree is intolerant to many pollutants, such as salts and sulfur dioxide.
2. Hackberry (Celtis occidentalis)
Covering its branches with exquisite fluffy white flowers, the Hackberry tree is one of the fastest-growing trees in Indiana that is perfect for adorning your landscape. This hardy tree grows at a medium to fast rate, from 13 inches to 24 inches per year. At its maximum growth, the height can reach up to 60 feet tall. Besides, it produces berries that are winter birds’ favorite.
Regarding the growing conditions, it favors moist, well-drained soil yet tolerates medium drought. This tree thrives well in various soil types as long as they have a pH of around 6.0 to 8.0, making it easy to care for. Nonetheless, it requires full sun to partial shade to ensure their flowering and fruiting go perfectly.
3. Leyland Cypress
Among its species, Leyland Cypress is the fastest growing evergreen tree you can grow in Indiana lawns. It is usually grown as landscaping trees, Christmas trees, and privacy screens, thanks to its pyramidal dense, green foliage and extremely rapid growth rate. The cypress can even grow to up to 3-4 feet per year in the proper growing conditions, where it can grow to up to 60-70 feet tall.
It is best planted in fertile, moist, well-drained soils with acidic to alkaline pH. Moreover, this cypress tree favors full sun to partial shade lighting levels. In addition, pruning is not necessary unless you want to maintain a particular shape and height. In that case, you must prepare to perform regular pruning considering its fast growth rate.
4. Northern Catalpa (Catalpa speciosa)
Can you imagine having a 98 feet tall-tree full of green and white? You can have it when you plant Northern Catalpa in your yard. It is a flowering deciduous tree that will charm you with blooming white flowers from mid-spring to early summer. Plus, the heart-shaped green leaves have stunningly decorated the tree, creating a wonderful sight to its appearance.
Unfortunately, Catalpa speciosa has a short-lived life span despite its rapid growth. However, it is still worth growing for its excellent characteristics. The fast-growing deciduous tree thrives in a wide range of soil types as long as they are deep, rich, moist soils. Even though being a moist-loving species, the water requirement is low. Instead of the sun, it prefers partial shade to grow.
5. Northern Red Oak
Growing for approximately 2 feet per year, it is one of the fastest-growing oak trees in Indiana, often cultivated for its eye-catching crimson foliage atop branching stems. The attractive fall leaves form a broad crown around 3/4 of the tree above the ground. For that reason, this oak cultivar is widely planted as street trees and to decorate yards.
Other than being an alluring shade tree, the woods are, in fact, incredibly beneficial as a material to produce some kinds of furniture, flooring, railroad cross-ties, and many more. Moreover, it is one of the most shade-tolerant oaks that copes well with the sun. It is not picky in terms of soil conditions since it thrives both in dry to moist, well-drained soils – only that the type must be loamy sands with acidic pH. It is crucial because, in alkaline conditions, the hardy tree can develop chlorosis.
6. Norway Spruce (Picea abies)
Picea abies or Norway Spruce can thrive in the Indiana climate despite being native to North and Central Europe. Like most spruce, it features green four-sided needle-like foliage about one inch long, showing off its greenery all season long. In its native habitat, Norway Spruce is a valuable species whose wood and fiber are beneficial for the pulp and paper industry. Some parts of this tree are also edible, for example, immature female cones which taste sweet when roasted.
Among other spruce species, Picea abies is the most climate-tolerant one. Furthermore, it is a hardy tree that can handle extreme weather conditions in Indiana, like harsh winters. That said, it can provide bird shelters from bad weather and predators. Nonetheless, this sun-loving tree prefers a cool summer climate with average, acidic, moist, well-drained soils to thrive. The species is best grown in the US hardiness zones 4 to 7. Hence, we include this tree as one of the fastest-growing trees in Indiana.
7. Pin Oak (Quercus palustris)
Quercus palustris or Pin Oak can be an ultimate choice as shade trees. It is a strong pyramidal tree whose trunks grow straight with horizontal branches as it develops. The leaves are green, turning dark red when autumn comes and last to winter. Unlike other gnarled oak trees, Pin Oaks tend to grow slender and gracefully.
As one of the easiest and fastest-growing oaks in Indiana, Quercus palustris does not need specific requirements to grow. Moreover, it can grow in partial shade and shade, yet it is a sun-loving species. It also does great in moist or wet soil, poorly drained, and acidic since Pin Oak is intolerant to alkaline pH. Because of this quality, you can grow in your waterlogged yard without worrying about root rot.
8. Quaking Aspen (Populus tremuloides)
Populus tremuloides is popular in its common name, Quaking Aspen or American Aspen. It is a fast-growing tree in Indiana whose height can reach 98 feet tall. The medium-sized tree has a pyramidal growing habit with a rounded crown full of dazzling dark green leaves that will later turn golden yellow in the fall.
Considering its size and beauty, Quaking Aspen is widely planted as ornamental trees. This sun-loving tree best performs in fertile, humusy, moist but well-drained soils. Since it has a robust root system and can grow up to 20-50 feet tall, it is not recommended to plant this tree near the building because it can damage the building structure and pollute the tiles with fallen leaves.
9. River Birch (Betula nigra)
Betula nigra or River Birch is a birch species that belongs to the fastest-growing trees in Indiana. It bears a single trunk wrapped in lush green foliage that will turn yellow during autumn. The height can reach up to 40-70 feet tall. Considering these features, River Birch is ideal for growing as shade trees in the rain garden.
Given that it grows near the river, it loves fertile, moist, semi-aquatic soil conditions with acidic pH. Nonetheless, it also withstands dry and heavy clay soil. Also, you need to add mulch to keep the roots moist. In addition, do not prune them while they produce sap in spring. Instead, you can collect the sap and drink it.
10. Silver Maple (Acer saccharinum)
Silver Maple can be a great option to provide shade to your landscape, thanks to the lush leaves. It is a medium-sized ornamental tree that produces attractive summer green foliage while stunning soft yellow shades slowly appear in the fall. Silver Maple is among the fastest-growing trees in Indiana to give you a breathtaking landscape, thanks to these features.
Speaking about its planting requirements, Silver Maple can grow under the sun, in partial shade, and in shady areas on rich, wet to moist, and slightly acidic soils. Knowing it loves moisture, regular watering is suggested. Despite being so eye-catching, it is not recommended to be planted near sidewalks because the vigorous roots can damage the paving.
11. Sugar Maple (Acer saccharum)
We believe you are familiar with maple syrup. Maple syrups are made of sap from the sugar maple tree, which contains about 1-5% sugar content. The hallmark of this large shade tree is the three to five-lobed leaves that grow thickly to form a broad crown. In addition, the leaves will turn golden to scarlet in autumn, offering a stunning view of the Indiana landscape.
Despite tolerating moderate drought, you must provide deep, moist, well-drained loamy soil to make these maples grow happily. Since it loves moisture, watering them around 5 gallons per week is necessary. Meanwhile, the site must have total sun exposure to achieve the best growth.
12. Tulip Tree (Liriodendron)
Belonging to the Magnolia family, it is no doubt that Tulip Trees highlight stunning flowers which have shapes resembling tulips and lilies. They have emerging pale yellow stamens and green-yellow petals with an orange outline in the middle of the blooms. Not to mention its star-shaped deep green foliage that adorns the tree even more. With all these excellent features, it is safe to say that Tulip Tree is one of the most beautiful, fastest-growing trees in Indiana.
This showy tree loves to be soaked in the sun yet copes part shade and shade. It grows faster in deep, rich, moist, but well-drained soils. And for that reason, it does not tolerate drought conditions since it may affect its physiological system and weaken the wood’s structure. Furthermore, this perennial flowering tree is generally insect and disease-free; thus, it will not bother you with any complicated maintenance.
13. Weeping Willow (Salix babylonica)
Salix babylonica or Weeping Willow Trees is a deciduous tree that grows up to 40 feet high at its mature height. It is graceful because its weeping branches sweep off the ground, making it different from other fast-growing shade trees. This large tree is also one of the earliest trees to grow leaves in the spring and the last leaves to fall in the autumn, creating a breathtaking view of your landscape.
Like the fastest growing trees in Indiana, it prefers moist, clay soils, loam, or sand under full sun to thrive. It also needs occasional wet soils. In this case, watering is crucial. Despite being a stunning tree, growing Weeping Willow near your house is not recommended because its roots can damage the structure of the building. Instead, you can plant them near ponds, streams, or riparian.
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FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)
What is the most low-maintenance tree in Indiana?
Besides being one of the fastest growing trees in Indiana, some oak trees also fall into the category of low-maintenance trees in the state, including Northern Red Oak and Pin Oak.
Moreover, they can cope with sun and shade and are not fussy about the soil types and conditions. Even the Pin Oak can thrive in poor soil, like waterlogged areas. You may only need to pay attention to the soil pH as some oak trees cannot stand the alkaline soils.
What is the fastest growing tree for privacy in Indiana?
Leyland Cypress is one of the fastest-growing trees in Indiana to create privacy in your garden. It grows tall and lush with green foliage that also offers beauty to the landscape. Furthermore, this tree also thrives in full sun to partial shade. Pruning is not necessary unless you want to create a particular shape.
What trees in Indiana do not drop leaves?
Trees that do not drop leaves throughout the year are called evergreen trees. And the perfect example of these evergreen trees to grow in Indiana is conifers, such as Eastern White Pine, Virginia Pine, and Jack Pine.
Moreover, they are fast-growing trees commonly found on natural trails, having needle-like foliage that becomes their hallmarks. These leaves will stay green all year, providing greenery despite the seasons.
What trees last all year round in Indiana?
Some evergreen trees in Indiana will pamper you with greenery all year round, for example, Eastern White Pine, Hemlock, Eastern Red Cedar, Virginia Pine, and Jack Pine. Even though they will not offer you the beautiful fall color, they will still offer fantastic green as far as the eye can see. Moreover, these trees can thrive in the US hardiness zone 3 to 8.
What is the easiest flowering tree in Indiana to grow?
Some of the easiest flowering trees will add a colorful touch to your Indiana lawn, including flowering dogwood, eastern redbud, sweetbay magnolia, and crab apple tree.
If you prefer pink flowers, you can take eastern redbud and sweetbay magnolia as they will let the stems be covered with pink blooms all spring.
Meanwhile, the white flowers belong to flowering dogwood and crabapple tree. Even the crab apple tree produces apple fruits you can enjoy during harvesting.