Not only do trees add more beauty to your yard, but they can add some local small wildlife too. There are many different types of trees that grow well in Oregon that are enjoyed by birds, squirrels, deer, butterflies, and more. If it’s woodpeckers in particular that you want to attract, there are certain trees you should look at planting that do attract them.
Woodpeckers are attracted to trees that will provide them with shelter, nesting, food, and a reliable water source. To help you, here are five trees that will attract woodpeckers in Oregon. Or, if you do not want woodpeckers in your yard, here are five trees that you should avoid planting.
1. Valley Oak
Valley oak trees are used by birds for both food and shelter. Woodpeckers especially enjoy eating the acorns that grow on these trees. Known scientifically as Quercus lobata, they are fast-growing trees, adding on over 24 inches each year. At maturity, they reach anywhere from 40 to 60 feet tall and can spread about 50 feet wide. If you want a tree that will attract woodpeckers for decades and decades, the valley oak can has lived for 600 years.
To grow at their healthiest, valley oak trees should be planted in an area that gets at least four direct hours of sunlight each day. They prefer soil that is loamy, moist, sandy, well-drained, acidic, and clay. Valley oak trees cannot tolerate wet conditions, but they can tolerate drought.
2. White Oak
White oak trees also grow acorns that are enjoyed by all sorts of animals, including woodpeckers. Lewis’s woodpecker is one species of woodpecker that calls white oak trees home. Scientifically called Quercus alba, this is the longest-living deciduous oak tree found in the United States. White oak trees can reach heights of 50 to 80 feet tall and spreads of around the same. They grow fairly quickly, adding 12 inches to 24 inches per year. White oak trees have trunks that are short and stocky. The limbs on these trees, however, are horizontal and massive.
White oak trees should not be planted in an area with heavy construction, as they are sensitive to disturbances. They should be planted in an area that gets at least four hours of sunlight each day. They can adapt to many different soils, but they prefer soil that is slightly acidic to neutral, moist, deep, and well-draining.
3. Ponderosa Pine
Many different species of woodpeckers call ponderosa pine trees home. Scientifically labeled Pinus ponderosa, these trees are known to attract birds such as Lewis’s woodpecker, the red-breasted sapsucker, the hairy woodpecker, and the white-headed woodpecker. White-headed woodpeckers also rely heavily on ponderosa pine trees for food. Ponderosa pine trees have a distinct bark that sets them apart from other pine trees. The needles on these trees are also about 5 to 10 inches long and yellow-green in color, which also sets them apart.
Ponderosa pine trees should be planted somewhere that gets six or more hours of direct sunlight each day. When mature, they can reach heights of 60 to 100 feet tall and widths of 25 to 30 feet. Some species of ponderosa pine can live for up to 200 years. They are drought-tolerant, but they can’t survive in areas that are extremely wet. They are adaptable to many soils such as moist, loamy sand; well-drained, clay loam; and rocky, alkaline, dry, and salt soils.
4. Western White Pine
All pine trees act as a good source of shelter and food for birds, and the western white pine is no different. Scientifically known as Pincus monticola, these trees grow oily seeds that are enjoyed by woodpeckers, other birds, and small mammals. The bark of these trees is also sometimes used as food by small, local wildlife. They are ornamental trees and especially popular during the Christmas season, as they have that traditional Christmas tree look.
Western white pine trees can reach heights of about 135 feet tall and spreads of about 20 to 40 feet. They should be planted in an area that receives full sun and part shade and in soil that is sandy or loamy. These trees do not grow well in clay soil.
5. Live Oak
Live oak trees can live to be centuries old. There’s a coastal live oak on the Pechanga Indian Reservation in California that is thought to be anywhere from 850 to 1,500 years old. Known scientifically as Quercus virginiana, these trees grow sweet acorns that are enjoyed by many birds, including woodpeckers. They also are broadleaf evergreen trees that can be used as shelter, and they’ll give your yard a picturesque feel to it.
Live oak trees can grow to heights of 40 to 80 feet tall and widths of 60 to 100 feet. They should be planted in areas that get at least four hours of direct sun each day. They are adaptable and will grow well in an array of soils, including alkaline, acidic, moist, sandy, well-drained, clay, and loamy. Live oak trees can tolerate some drought and flood but do prefer normal moisture.
As you can see, there are various trees that will attract woodpeckers in Oregon. One thing you may have noticed is that all of the above-mentioned trees are either pine trees or oak trees. This is because woodpeckers like pine and oak trees the most. Woodpeckers use pine trees for their pine nuts and the tasty sap that they produce. They also like oak trees because they enjoy eating the acorns that fall off of these trees. Animals use trees in many different ways, and woodpeckers are no different. By planting a tree in your yard that will attract woodpeckers, you are helping out local wildlife. Animals and trees rely on each other for support, and you can help contribute to that.
Need a hand planting trees that will attract woodpeckers to your yard? Contact the experts at Mr. Tree. We’ll help you find and care for the perfect tree.