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Lawn & Garden

Hybrid Poplar, Populus deltoids x Populus nigra

Common Name: Hybrid poplar

Type: tree


Zone: 3 to 9     Find Your Zone

Height: 40 to 60 feet

Width: 20 to 30 feet

Sun exposure: full sun

Soil: adaptable in acidic and alkaline soils and prefers wet soils

Leaves: deciduous

Fertilizer: Vigoro Tree, Shrub and Evergreen or Miracle Gro Evergreen Tree Spikes


Hybrid Poplar is a cross between North America’s cottonwood tree, aspen tree and European poplars. These trees are considered to be one of the fastest growing of all trees. It is not uncommon for this tree to grow 6 to 8 feet per year. Its parents are known for their fast growth habits but also their abundance of dead wood. Willows, poplars and cottonwood grow quite fast and all three are notorious for getting dead wood in them.


When you have a tree that that seems too good to be true then you look for its flaws. This tree has plenty of those also. This tree is said to be very susceptible to fungal leaf spots as well as canker that can kill the tree within a few years. This tree is ideal for planting on property lines to give privacy but not recommended in the middle of the landscape, due to its littering of dead branches. It burns well in the fireplace and many people grow it for firewood. This tree also makes a good windbreak and works well for erosion control. This tree lives a short life.


STEP 1: Digging the hole

  • Find a location that has suitable sun exposure for your particular type of plant.
  • Dig your hole an inch or two shallower than the rootball of the plant.
  • Dig the hole twice the diameter of the rootball.
  • Scuff up the sides of the hole with a shovel to help roots break through the native soil.

STEP 2: Putting plant in hole

  • When removing the plant from the pot, check to see if the roots were circling the pot.
  • If the plant is rootbound, gently break up the roots with your hands until loosened up.
  • Set plant level, in the center of the hole.
  • Make sure the top of the rootball is just above soil level.

STEP 3: Amending the soil and filling in the hole

  • Amend the soil with proper amendments for your soil type. 
  • Incorporate 50% native soil with 50% amendment soils like garden soil, composted manure or soil conditioner.
  • Make sure dirt clods are broken up or removed from hole along with rocks.
  • Fill the hole with soils to the soil level and pack down. Do not cover top of rootball with dirt.
  • Water in thoroughly to remove air pockets.

STEP 4: Mulching and fertilizing

  • Cover the planting site with at least 2 inches of the mulch of your choice (pinestraw, cupress mulch,etc.)
  • High Phosphorus root stimulator fertilizers like Quick Start from Miracle Gro are great to use at time of planting.
  • When planting trees, a tree stake kit may be required to prevent the wind from blowing over or breaking our newly planted tree until it becomes established.

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Related Articles:

Fastest Growing Trees.

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Posted 2015-10-04T20:03:19+0000  by Ingar_HD_ATL Ingar_HD_ATL