Tree Planting

The Best Trees for Your Yard: Five Fast Growing Trees in Ontario, Canada

Today, some of the most popular trees planted are fast-growing, and for many great reasons! 

Some trees can take decades to mature or show substantial growth, while fast-growing trees can grow a considerable amount in a short time. They allow homeowners to appreciate the benefits of a mature tree sooner. 

If you want shade, privacy, or added beauty for your landscape quickly, a fast growing tree is perfect for your property. 

In Ontario, Canada, fast-growing native trees are ideal and recommended. They are perfectly adapted to the local environmental conditions, wildlife, and geography, which means they do not need much care to survive and thrive.  

Listed below are five fast growing trees in Ontario.

Table of Contents

Eastern White Pine (Native)

No tree represents Ontario more than the eastern white pine. It’s the provincial tree of Ontario! 

It grows in southeastern Canada and the eastern U.S and is commonly found as far north as Newfoundland and as far south as northern Georgia. 

These tall trees were highly valued and used to make masts for the British Royal Navy ships in colonial times.

If you plant it in direct sun, it grows quickly and is ideal for blocking any views or creating shade for your house.

If it’s exposed to a lot of wind, the eastern white pine grows crooked, with short, small branches on the side that faces the wind.

This fast growing evergreen tree has skinny needles that are 6cm to 12cm long and grow in bunches of five. The pine cones are 8cm to 20cm long and hang down from the branches. 

Its bark is dark greyish brown with broad, thick ridges.

Medium sized bright yellow pinecones and green pine needles growing on a pine tree

Growing Conditions:

Height: Up to 35m tall

Diameter: Up to 140cm wide

Growth: Up to 90cm a year

Life Span: 

Shade: Partial shade when young but prefers direct sunlight

Moisture: Tolerates a variety of moisture levels

Soil: Grows in any soil but prefers sand or sandy loam

Sycamore Tree (Native)

The sycamore tree is found naturally across southwestern Ontario and the Toronto area. It extends as far north as parts of Prince Edward Island. 

Sycamore trees grow to be one of the largest (height and width) broadleaf trees in eastern North America and thrive on rich floodplains. It is an excellent fast growing shade tree.

Like many willow species, this native tree has a shallow, fibrous root system that can hit septic beds and sewage pipes if it is searching for water. It is important to give them plenty of space to grow to prevent property damage.

The signature patchwork bark of the beautiful sycamore tree flakes off to reveal its white, green, and cream-coloured inner bark. It has large leaves similar to the maple leaf, and its fruits are firm ball-like groups of hairy seeds.

Big mature tree with brown branches and green leaves

Growing Conditions:

Height: Up to 35m tall

Diameter: Up to 200cm wide

Growth: Up to 60cm a year

Life span: Long living- more than 250 years

Shade: part shade or full sun

Moisture: Prefers moist soil

Soil: Rich soil

Tulip Tree (Native)

The tulip tree is Canada’s tallest deciduous tree. It grows in eastern North America, extending into Canada in southwestern Ontario and south into central Florida and Louisiana.

The ornamental tree is highly adaptable and can withstand Canada’s cold winters and Florida’s subtropical summers. 

The tulip tree is a large, fast-growing tree in both height and width with wide-spread roots.

The bark is brownish-green and smooth when young and turns brown and becomes grooved as it matures. The foliage is dark green with a whitish blue underside and grows up to six inches long.

As the name implies, once this native tree is mature (12 -15 years), the tulip tree produces gorgeous yellow-green tulip-shaped flowers which bloom during late spring or summer. The flowers have six petals and are 7-12 cm long. 

The seeds of the tulip tree grow every year and are a source of food for birds and small mammals.

Yellow tulip flowers with a tint of orange growing on a tall tree with green leaves

Growing Conditions:

Height: Up to 30m tall

Diameter: up to 100 cm wide

Growth: Up to 60cm a year

Life Span: Around 250 years

Shade: Full sun

Moisture: Lot of moisture during summer

Soil: Sandy or sandy loam

Silver Maple (Native)

The silver maple is a native species that grows in Eastern North America as far north as central Ontario and south into Florida.

It grows quickly and is often planted as a shade tree or for privacy. 

The silver maple is a large tree that needs plenty of room to grow.

It isn’t an ideal tree to plant next to city streets or houses due to the number of leaves that fall off in the autumn and wide growing roots that can clog sewer pipes.

Its light green leaves are 15cm to 20cm long, with 5 to 7 lobes. The silver maple is very similar to the red maple tree, except its leaves turn pale yellow or brown in the fall. 

The bark on the silver maple’s trunk is smooth and gray when the tree is young. The bark becomes dark reddish-brown as it matures and breaks into strips that peel off at either end. 

The trunks of silver maples can naturally become hollow, creating space for animals and birds to live in.

Brown and red maple leafs growing on a big tree

Causes & Symptoms:

Height: Up to 35m tall

Diameter: Over 100 cm wide

Growth: Around 60cm a year

Life Span: Up to 125 years in a non-urban setting

Shade: Full sun but tolerant to some shade

Moisture: Moist soil

Soil: Rich soil

Red Oak (Native)

Red oak, also known as the eastern red oak, grows well in Eastern North America. It grows in Nova Scotia down through Ontario and into the United States, spanning from Minnesota to Oklahoma and east to Arkansas.

The red oak is a native tree that is highly valued for its timber in Ontario. Its wood is very durable and is optimal for furniture, flooring, and millwork. 

It is a good street tree that tolerates pollution and compacted soil. It needs room to grow and doesn’t grow very well if it’s close to other trees.

The foliage of the red oak are dark green and have seven to eleven lobes and sharp, bristly tips. They turn a gorgeous red in the fall. 

The bark is grey and smooth when young and becomes fissured as the tree matures. 

The acorns can stay on the tree all year and are used as food by local wildlife in the winter. Sometimes dead leaves stay on the red oak, even in the winter.

Big thirty foot tall tree with bright orange and dark red coloured leaves

Growing Conditions:

Height: Up to 30m tall

Diameter: Up to 90cm wide

Growth: 60cm or more a year

Life Span: Longer than 200 years

Shade: Full sun but tolerant to some shade

Moisture: Tolerates a variety of moisture levels

Soil: Grows in a variety of soils

Tree Specialists

Now that you know five fast growing trees in Ontario, you can narrow down your favourites. 


Our team of tree professionals can carefully analyze all of your specific needs and recommend the best trees for your property. 

Call Nature’s Shade for professional help choosing and planting your next tree today!

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