Shade Trees Help Reduce Energy Consumption
by Randy Watson
Down here in South Texas, our summers heat up daily to over 100 degrees and occasionally touch the 110 degree mark. Our winters aren't so bad though. To help keep your house cool in the summer, you need to try to keep the sunshine from hitting the house. In the winter time you want to try to let as much sun hit the house to warm it. Deciduous trees (trees that lose all of their leaves each fall) save energy in summer by shading the house. While evergreen trees and shrubs save energy by slowing cold winds in the winter.
Planting the right tree in the right place is the key to saving energy with trees. Trees planted on the west, south and east sides of your home or building provide shade from the sun during the hottest times of the day, reducing the load on your air conditioning system. Reducing the load on your air conditioning system will save you energy. You will also have a more comfortable home.
Plant trees far enough away from
sidewalks, driveways, and buildings so the crown has room to
develop. Consider power line location when planting a tree. Trees
that grow into power lines cause electrical outages, increased line
maintenance costs and pruning.
Mature trees add value to a home, but, carefully select the right tree for the location. Keep in mind your lawn turf may suffer from the shade. Good luck!