About Central Florida Gardener

Welcome and thank you for visiting Central Florida Gardener. Florida is a unique state in which to garden. It can be frustrating but also rewarding for gardeners who persevere. This blog was created as a resource for Florida gardeners, both new and experienced, in search of information specifically for Florida gardens.

You are invited to participate by leaving your comments, suggestions, tips and recommendations relevant to Florida gardening - don't be shy! Thank you for dropping by to learn more about gardening in the Sunshine state. I look forward to hearing from you! Susan

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Conserve Energy with Trees


According to the University of Florida, "Residential energy use comprises about 26% of all the energy used in the state of Florida. In Central Florida, about 28% of this annual residential energy expenditure is for cooling the home during Florida's 5 to 7 month summer."

Windows and glass doors, as well as north-east and west walls account for the most heat entering a home in summer. The easiest way to reduce heat gain (and save on your electric bill) is to plant trees and shrubs in these locations.
I dropped by my local extension office for some suggestions on the best type of tree to plant on the northeast side of our home which is very warm during the morning hours. They gave me a great hand-out called, Enviroscaping to Conserve Energy: Trees for Central Florida.
Their list contained 70 varieties suitable for north, central & south Florida. I started by eliminating the "north" and "south" only trees. Then narrowed the list down according to growth rate, form, shade density, size, leaf persistance and drought tolerance. I found it very easy to use, and ended up with a selection of 5 trees that would be suitable for our particular soil.
If you're looking to plant a tree and reap the savings on your electric bill, I highly suggest using the University of Florida's Enviroscaping to Conserve Energy: Trees for Central Florida handout. It will make your decision a lot easier.
For more tips on gardening to conserve energy, click here to read their entire enviroscaping series.


2 comments:

bestdank said...

My electric bill has doubled since last summer. This was a great post. I plan on planting trees on all sides of the house to hopefully bring down that dang power bill! Thanks for posting this.

Susan said...

bestdank...You're welcome. I am a tree lover and wish more folks would plant them. Glad to hear your planning to add a few to your garden.