"Growing trees is as much an art as it is a science." - Becky Thomas
"When you plant a tree, you plant a legacy," - Pepper Provanzano
"The creation of a thousand forests is in one acorn." - Ralph Waldo Emerson


ResourcesWelcome to our Tree Resources page. If we find interesting articles or ideas about trees we will post them here. We will also have some useful links to organizations or websites that we think might be helpful to our customers.

We hope this page will give you a better understanding of trees as well as give you great ideas about things going on in the green industry. If you have something interesting that you think we should post, please let us know.



We put together a great sheet about the Social, Economic, & Environmental Benefits of Trees. You can click below to view that.  Trees benefit us & our communities in so many different ways. Help us share this knowledge & feel free to use this list to further educate your community about trees!

pdf-iconSocial, Economic, & Environmental Benefits of Trees

Species Diversity Selections – At Spring Grove Nursery, we are proud to have a diverse & superior selection of tree species growing in our nursery. We work very hard to select a mix of trees that are well suited for our landscape while at the same time offer a unique palate of colors & textures throughout the seasons. We recently put together a comprehensive list of the selections we are growing here at the nursery. Some of the trees on our list are ready to dig & sell now, and some are still growing in the field. Please check with us for the most current availability with pricing. On the last page of the link we have a list of “Tried & True” Trees. The list highlights trees we have found to perform well in our nursery and in the landscape. 

pdf-iconSpecies Diversity Selections – “Tried & True” Trees

Tree Diversity Planting Guidelines – Shade Tree Alternatives to Ash.  This document was created here a the nursery to help customers select good shade tree alternatives to Ash in the landscape.  We promote planting a diverse selection of trees in any project & this resource can be helpful in the decision process.

pdf-iconShade Tree Alternatives to Ash

Selecting Trees for Tomorrow’s Urban Forest – Becky Thomas of Spring Grove Nursery was recently asked to present this topic to both the Central & Northern IL Tree City USA Conferences.  Here are some links to both her presentation & our “Grower’s Choice” Shade Trees & our “Utility Friendly” Trees lists. 

pdf-iconSelecting Trees for Tomorrow’s Urban Forest

pdf-icon “Grower’s Choice” Shade Trees & “Utility Friendly” Trees

“Urban Trees for a New Century” was recently presented by Nancy Buley of J. Frank Schmidt Nursery & some OGA (Ornamental Grower’s Association of Northern IL) at the iLandscape Show in Feb 2015. Becky Thomas joined Nancy Buley to examine the book Shade Trees in Towns & Citieswritten by William Solotaroff in 1911. The grower’s presentation reviewed his top performers then & highlighted a sneak peak at promising new city trees for today’s urban forest.  For their complete list of recommendations & a recap of Solotaroff’s book click the links below.

pdf-iconUrban Trees for a New Century

pdf-iconShade Trees in Towns & Cities

“It’s 2015 – These are the Plants you are Using” was presented by a panel of OGA  growers at the iLandscape Show in Feb 2014.  Becky Thomas presented a “state of the nursery industry” shapshot addressing the growing concern over the shrinking supply of trees.  Here is a link to her presentation:

pdf-iconOGA State of the Nursery Industry Presentation

The Alliance for Community Trees (ACTrees) gathered many scientifically proven benefits of urban forests into a single document for tree advocates to use. These facts come directly from primary research conducted by professional scientists, with all citations noted.  Grouped by category, these benefits speak to the enormous monetary, social, and ecological value of urban forests to human society. They argue for the vital role of trees in our communities. ACTrees member organizations nationwide are working to bring these benefits to towns small and large, improving the health and livability of our communities by planting and caring for trees.

pdf-iconBenefits of Trees & Urban Forests

pdf-iconWhy Trees? This Document from the SMA answers that very question!

pdf-iconWhere Do Trees Fit In? The SMA offers great tips for municipalities on how to plan for trees.

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The Morton Arboretum in Lisle, IL is a great place to start when it comes to learning about trees. They have their own research facility & staff that work hard to educate the public & the industry on the latest developments in horticulture. They also recently published a new list of Recommended Species for Northern Illinois. Check out their website for more info about this great resource.

link-iconMorton Arboretum

link-iconMorton Arboretum Recommended Species List

In 1872, J. Sterling Morton founded the first Arbor Day Celebration. Today the Arbor Day Foundation is one of the leaders in educating the public about the benefits of trees in our landscape. Through several different programs, the Arbor Day Foundation helps communities & citizens learn about trees and plant them in the landscape. Their website hosts a wealth of info & great ideas about planting trees.

link-iconArbor Day

The United States National Arboretum in Washington DC is a great place to visit, either in person or on the web. Their research staff has developed some new tree releases, many of which we are growing now. Check out their website to find out more about new research & info about trees.

link-iconNational Arboretum

The International Society of Arborists has a great website & tree info campaign called Trees are Good.  You can find out many great facts about trees on this site.  Jamie Thomas is a Certified Arborist and member of the ISA, and we have found this to be a great organization with a terrific wealth of knowledge about trees.

link-iconTrees Are Good

One of our liner suppliers, J. Frank Schmidt Nursery & Son in Oregon, has put together a great website with links to interesting things about trees. Named “Trees are the Answer”, their successful marketing campaign has helped growers learn & promote trees in our landscape. The website has links to all sorts of research projects & organizations that work to educate about tree benefits.

link-iconTrees Are The Answer

One our favorite links is the National Tree Benefit Calculator conceived & developed by Casey Trees & Davey Tree Expert Co. This tool helps you calculate the monetary benefit of a tree in the landscape over time. Whether you use this to calculate trees in your home landscape or use this to help promote trees to your customers, we feel this tool has enormous value to the Green Industry.

link-iconTree Benefits Calculator

The National Elm Trial is volunteer effort to evaluate and promote the use of Dutch elm disease-resistant American and hybrid elms. Check out their website to find out more about this research.

link-iconTree Health

Useful Green Industry Links…

MELA, Midwest Ecological Landscaping Association, is a community of landscape designers, contractors, suppliers and nurseries committed to sustainability. We are proud members of this new organization, and we recommend looking at their site to see what they are up to.


The Society of Municipal Arborists has a mission statement of “Leading the world in building the confidence, competence, and camaraderie of the family of professionals who create and sustain community forests.” They have selected the Eastern Redbud as their 2010 Urban Tree of the Year, and we are proud to be growing some great specimens in our nursery. As a Certified Arborist, Jamie is a member of this organization, and we hope to learn more about urban forestry and our nursery’s role in growing the right trees for their needs.

link-iconUrban Forestry

The Alliance for Community Trees, or ACT, is another great organization that we are proud members of.  ACT brings together a coalition of organizations dedicated to the same cause – restoring community forests for the benefit of all people. ACT is the only national organization solely focused on the needs of nonprofit and community organizations engaged in urban forest protection. Their work is improving the environment where 86% of Americans live: our cities, towns, and villages. Together, ACT’s national network of members have planted and cared for 7.8 million trees with help from 450,000 volunteers.  Check out their website to find out how you can get involved in your local community!


Trees Forever is an organization that not only plants and cares for trees, but also addresses the challenges facing our communities and the environment. Their goals involve getting information and tools to the people who volunteer their time to make a difference. Their mission is to plant and care for trees and the environment by empowering people, building community, and promoting stewardship.  We are proud members of this great group & we invite you to join with them too!

link-iconTrees Forever

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