There’s been a local push to add more trees to the Phoenix skyline. For those that live in the Valley year-round, we understand how hard it can be to enjoy the city during the peak months of summer, with temperatures constantly topping the 100s. It gets hot. And when it gets that hot, or even hotter, it’s hard to be outside to window shop and take in all that Phoenix has to offer.
Did you know that some parts of Phoenix only have 7-8 percent shade? Some places average as much as 17 percent in shade, but officials in the city would like to aim for 25 percent shade.
Now, we know what you’re thinking—don’t trees need water? And aren’t we always worried about conserving water?
Well, some of the shade will come from more “engineered” trees—small steel “trees” are being constructed around downtown. These are perfect because they are low maintenance and clean for the city. Meanwhile, carefully selected tree varieties like mesquite and palo brea trees, which are native to the area, and non-native trees like Chinese pistache and oak provide high yielding benefits to help cool the downtown.
Why not just use all metal tree sculptures? Trees not only provide shade, but will help the air quality in Phoenix. Trees remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere during photosynthesis, and then returns oxygen back into the atmosphere as a byproduct of the photosynthesis process.
Choosing the right shade-bearing vegetation around your home can help you conserve energy around your home. Using shade around your home can help reduce air conditioning costs by up to 35 percent. Trees not only shade buildings, but they shade patios, sidewalks, cooling concrete and blacktops—which makes being outdoors more inviting as well.
Using smaller vegetation, such as shrubs and bushes, around your air conditioning unit and lower part of your home, not only adds an aesthetic appeal to your home, but can actually help improve the efficiency of your air conditioner because the shade will cool the unit, keeping the temperature down so it doesn’t have to work as hard to cool your home.
So while you’re out enjoying downtown Phoenix, take a deeper breath of fresh air and enjoy a little more time outside, then take some inspiration home and call the pros at Fountain Hills to see how you can use nature to improve efficiency as well as quality products to install.