5 Good Shade Trees for Southern Florida

If you live in Clearwater, one thing that you know is that it can get very hot there. That’s why you want to know what good shade trees that you can buy that are perfect for the region. Below are 5 trees you want to consider when you’re looking for good shade trees for Florida and what they have to offer.

Black Olive

This tree is a Florida Keys native and it produces capsules that are black seeded and small, which are not edible. It grows to be 40-50 feet high and will stay green through the year. The tree’s trunk is smooth, and it will form a complete crown as it grows.

One of the most interesting things about the tree is the blue-green leaves. These leaves contain tannins, which often stain things like walkways or driveways if you wait a while to clean them up. this tree’s appreciated for the beautiful foliage as well as its branching, and finally for its shade.

Live Oak

These deep rooting trees are very resilient, and they hold strong even when there’s a hurricane. This means that it’s perfect for South Florida. They also are great to use for windbreaks, which means that not only can they give you shade but they also can help protect your buildings during a storm.

These trees are excellent shade trees in the south, and they’re known for their arching branches reaching out from their trunks dramatically and canopy shapes. The branches of the trees reach, and they look gorgeous when they’re lit up at night. Squirrels and birds often build a home in them because there’s lots of cover and food. Live oaks are a huge fan of The Keys’ and South Florida’s acidic soil, and the tree’s roots are going to dig down and go into rock with no problem. This means that they’re not just focal points, but they’re also hardy trees for shade that don’t need much care.


The mahogany tree’s delicate, fine leaves have a texture that’s different than the other shade trees, which will add some interest to your landscape in South Florida. Even though it’s an evergreen tree, there’s something dropping of the leaves with mahogany, although it doesn’t contain tannins, so you don’t have to worry about stains. It’s also known for the beautiful red bark, which is very popular for furniture. When you plant this kind of tree, you’re contributing to the tree’s sustainability. It’s on the endangered list of trees in Florida. This tree has a very dense canopy that it produces so it will give you a lot of shade.

Ficus Tree

This family of trees will do well growing in Florida. It appreciates the tropical climate there, and it comes in many different varieties. In The Keys and South Florida, the one that is found there is a ficus area. This tree can grow as tall as 100 feet and as wide as 100 feet if you leave it alone. You also can shape it and manipulate the way it grows.

Ficus Aurea’s trunk is fatter when compared with other varieties of ficus, so it provides you with a stable tree for shade. This is very beneficial because of those powerful winds that the area experience. It grows shooters that are string-like that will drop down out of the canopy, then takes root in the ground so that larger branches are supported. This is why they’re called Florida Strangler figs.

Gumbo Limbo

Sometimes this tree’s called a Tourist Tree. This name comes from the red bark on the tree which peels back, a lot like when tourists are sunburned, and they peel. Other than the noticeable bark, this tree grows some branches that start pretty close to the grass and then splay out artistically. The structure of the tree is stunning, and it’s also tolerant of wind, which means it’s great for The Keys and South Florida.
It’s tolerant to salt, so it’s safe for the properties along the post. Another exciting thing about is that in Central American countries, some people cut the branches off and then stick the branches down into the ground near to one another like a fence. The branches will take root and form a living wall from trees. It’s so cool!

These are five good examples of South Florida shade trees. When you want a tree to keep you cool during the summer, these trees are good ones to choose from.