So, Andy & I were talking about planting a tree in the front yard (we disagree what the front yard is, so let's just say the big open grass area when you walk straight off the porch toward the road - not Main St.).
It is such an open area that gets so much sun. So we were thinking of planting something so that the houses can get some shade, although it will be a bitch to mow around. So, I'm thinking a fast grower, probably some hybrid that can thrive here in our Zone 4.
Here are some options:
Tuliptree (Yellow Poplar) It grows fast (about 6 ft. 1st year), has pretty flowers, nice oval shape, like full sun, maybe a little too tall
Hybrid Poplar Grows very fast(up to 8 ft. 1st year), nice oval shape, like full sun, good height for what we need
Ameri-Willow Grows very fast (8+ ft. in 1st year), likes full sun, likes a lot of water, might get a little too tall
I think we are leaning towards the Hybrid Poplar. The height will probably be perfect and the shape is nice. I read on different message boards that all willow varities have a tendecy of stealing all the water in the ground (which will dry out the grass more) because they have a shallow root system, and the roots can grow to invade sewer pipes and septic systems if they are not getting enough water. Sounds like they could become quite a problem if not planted in the perfeect location. We'll probably wait until next spring to plant, rather than planting this fall.