Zelkova Tree Pros and Cons

The Zelkova Tree is a deciduous hardwood tree that can be found in Asia, Europe, and North America.

It is native to Japan and Korea, but was introduced to the United States in 1862.

The Zelkova Tree is valued for its beautiful form and bark. The bark of the tree often peels off in small strips and reveals a deep red color underneath. This makes it an ideal ornamental tree for landscaping purposes.

There are many different species of Zelkova trees, including Japanese zelkova (Zelkova serrata) and Caucasian zelkova (Zelkova carpinifolia).

Both of these species are very similar in appearance but have slightly different characteristics that make them unique from one another.

Zelkova trees are fast-growing deciduous trees with leaves upto 5cm long that turn yellow in autumn.

The tree produces beautiful flowers in spring that attract bees and butterflies.

The zelkova tree has a pyramidal shape when it is young, but as it matures, it becomes oval-shaped or rounded at the top.

If you want to keep your zelkova tall and narrow, prune off branches when they are one year old to encourage branching at the top of the trunk.

You can also prune away lower branches as they grow old and loose their foliage so that light reaches all parts of your tree’s canopy.

Zelcova Tree Pros

Great street tree

Zelkova is a great street tree because it’s easy to grow, attractive, and can withstand the harsh conditions of city life.

They have an upright branching habit that makes them ideal for streets and sidewalks with limited space or for planting under power lines where there is not enough room for large trees like maples or oaks which grow wider than they do.

They can grow in full sun or partial shade, and they’re tolerant of many soil types.

They also have an extensive root system that helps them survive when they’re transplanted.

Zelkovas are also attractive trees with interesting shapes and colors that complement other trees and shrubs in urban settings.

Their leaves turn red in fall before falling away, so they add beauty to your yard as well as curb appeal!

Finally, Zelkova trees can take a lot of abuse and you know what kind of abuse your city streets take during winter storms or construction projects!

These tough guys will give you years of enjoyment without breaking a sweat.

Good substitute for elms

Elm trees have been a staple of American cities since the 19th century.

Their beautiful, wide-spreading branches are often the first thing you see when you enter a city.

Unfortunately, Dutch Elm disease has decimated many of these majestic trees. In some cities, up to 80 percent of all elms have been lost due to the disease.

Fortunately, there is an excellent replacement that looks almost identical to elms: zelkovas.

Zelkovas have the same graceful appearance as their North American cousins and can add beauty to any yard or city park.

Zelkovas grow quickly and can reach heights of 70 feet or more when mature.

Their leaves turn yellow in fall before dropping off in wintertime; this allows sunlight to penetrate into the soil where it is needed by plants growing underneath them during cold months when sunlight is scarce!

This trait makes them ideal candidates for urban environments where space is limited but sunlight may be hard to come by during winter months when most other plants would die back due to lack of light reaching them through surrounding structures such as buildings or sidewalks/roadsides that block out direct sunlight from reaching ground level areas where plants need it most.

Zelkovas are easy to grow

Zelkova trees are easy to grow and maintain. They can be grown as a single tree or in a group, so they fit into many different yards and gardens.

They also have the added benefit of being drought-resistant and disease-resistant, so you won’t have to worry about over-watering or dealing with fungus and other pests that can be harmful to your trees.

Zelkovas have a dense canopy that will provide plenty of shade for your yard, which helps keep your plants cool during the summer months.

They also produce beautiful flowers every spring and summer, which makes them a great addition to any garden or yard!

Tolerates heat, cold, drought and city conditions

Zelkova trees are a type of tree that can tolerate a lot of different conditions. They’re known to be able to grow in many different environments, including heat, cold, drought and city conditions.

Zelkova is often used as an ornamental tree because of its beautiful fall color and fast growing habit.

It makes an excellent shade tree because it grows rapidly and tolerates sun well.

The Zelkova can be planted in full sun or partial shade but should not be planted in deep shade because it will not thrive in those conditions.

It prefers moist soil with good drainage but will grow in most soil conditions including clay soils with good drainage which would not normally support other trees or shrubs because they are not tolerant of these conditions like Zelkova is!

No serious insect or disease problems

Zelkovas is a hardy, fast-growing tree that can be grown in almost any climate.

It is commonly used as a windbreak, shelterbelt, and ornamental tree.

The Zelkova tree is relatively disease- and insect-resistant relative to other trees in the same genus.

These factors make it an excellent choice for homeowners looking for a new shade tree.

Zelkova Tree Cons


  • It can be very time-consuming to prune a zelkova tree. A lot of patience and precision are required when doing this job.
  • It’s also very risky to prune a zelkova tree because of its height and the fact that it has a lot of branches that are at an angle where you can’t see what’s happening below them. If you make a mistake, it could lead to serious injury or even death!
  • A zelkova tree can be very expensive to have pruned by professional tree services, so this is not something everyone can afford to do themselves!

Zelkova trees are susceptible to a host of diseases.

Another con of zelkova trees is that they are susceptible to a host of diseases.

Although the tree has been bred for resistance to some diseases, there are still some issues that can cause problems for this tree.

The zelkova tree can develop cankers especially in cold weather.

Another most common issue with zelkova trees is root rot. This fungus can be caused by overwatering or poor drainage, which can lead to a number of problems for the tree.

In some cases, root rot can kill the entire tree if it is not treated quickly enough.

In addition to root rot, there are many other diseases that affect zelkova trees including Anthracnose or Chinese elm anthracnose and Crown gall.


I hope this article was useful to you and will help you in the future if you want to go for a tree planting program in your city. The Zelkova is one of the cheapest trees that can be grown, easily making it one of the top plants for urban greening.

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