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  • Writer's pictureKelly Robinson

Common Trees of Denver: Cottonwoods


Expert Tree Trimming Services in Littleton, Colorado
Cottonwood trees are some of the largest trees found in the Denver Metro. Often times the cost of removing or pruning a cottonwood is much greater than your average tree

Cottonwood trees are a common sight in Colorado and come in different species. Understanding the differences between the species can help property owners to determine the best course of action for maintaining their trees. In this article, we will discuss the three main species of cottonwood found in Colorado and their characteristics.

The first species of cottonwood found in Colorado is the Eastern Cottonwood (Populus deltoides). This species can grow up to 100 feet tall and is known for its large, triangular-shaped leaves. Eastern cottonwood is a fast-growing tree and is often used for shade and ornamental purposes. However, it has a relatively short lifespan of around 50-70 years and can develop disease and pest problems if not properly maintained.

The second species of cottonwood found in Colorado is the Fremont Cottonwood (Populus fremontii). This species can also grow up to 100 feet tall and is known for its large, triangular-shaped leaves. Fremont cottonwood is a slower-growing tree than the Eastern cottonwood and has a longer lifespan of around 70-100 years. It is considered a more durable species and is often used for landscaping and erosion control.

The third species of cottonwood found in Colorado is the Plains Cottonwood (Populus deltoides ssp. Monilifera). This species is also known as the "necklace poplar" due to the drooping clusters of seeds it produces, it can grow up to 60 feet tall and is known for its large, triangular-shaped leaves. The Plains cottonwood is also a fast-growing tree and is often used for shade and ornamental purposes. It has a relatively short lifespan of around 50-70 years and can develop disease and pest problems if not properly maintained.

It's important to note that all cottonwood species are known for their strong and aggressive root systems, which can cause damage to sidewalks, foundations, and underground utilities. Property owners should also be aware that cottonwoods produce a large amount of cotton-like seeds and leaves, which can be a nuisance during certain seasons.

Larger Cottonwood trees can get very expensive to prune and remove. Often times pruning a cottonwood here in Denver is a full days job with multiple climbers in the tree. The amount of area the climbers have to cover is larger and oftern times there are hazards under the trees leading to rigging, which takes alot of time. Removals of Cottonwoods are an aninmal in thier own right, often times requiring a larger crane and road closures. Contact colorado Premier Tree Care if you need a cottonwood tree pruned or removed.

Understanding the differences between the species of cottonwood found in Colorado can help property owners to determine the best course of action for maintaining their trees. Eastern cottonwood, Fremont cottonwood, and Plains cottonwood are the three main species of cottonwood found in Colorado and each has its own unique characteristics and maintenance needs. Property owners should consult with Colorado Premier Tree Care to determine the best course of action for their specific trees.

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