Three Invasive Tree Species to Watch Out For in North Carolina

Invasive tree species is one of the chief reasons why people contact our arborists at Frady Tree Care for help. Certain trees can rob native trees of the natural resources they need to survive, such as soil nutrients. They can also prevent other trees from obtaining moisture from rain and nearby streams.

Our experts at the tree service by Frady Tree Care in Winston-Salem are the most in-demand in across North Carolina. We have hundreds of five-star reviews from satisfied customers caring for native plants and deciduous trees.

In this overview, we will discuss the most common invasive trees in North Carolina. We’ll also teach you how to spot them and explain why they are destructive to local plant life.

Princess Tree

Per the North Carolina Invasive Plant Council, the Paulownia Tomentosa, or Princess Tree, is one of the most aggressive invasive tree species across the state. They can grow up to 60 feet tall. As a result, they suck up large amounts of water and nutrients that neighboring trees need to be healthy.

Princess Trees feature heart-shaped or oval leaves and gray-brown barks. You can find them in many deciduous forests and commercial properties with spacious woodlands.

As a member of the Figwort family, the Princess Tree is an ornamental plant in China and Europe. Today, they invade many nutrient-rich environments across 25 eastern states. They mostly grow on steep rocky slopes, stream banks, roadsides, forest edges, and disturbed natural areas.

Our arborists control the spread of the Princess Tree by pulling its young seedlings from loose soil. We then remove roots from the ground after cutting them down. If needed, we apply herbicidal treatments when they resprout.


The Ailanthus Altissima, or Tree-of-Heaven, is one of the tallest invasive tree species in Washington, Baltimore, Philadelphia, and North Carolina. These giant trees can grow up to 100 feet tall. They also feature gray and light brown barks reaching six feet in diameter.

Most people spot Trees-of-Heaven on their properties during the late summer. This period is when they sprout yellow-green flowers that spread seedlings enclosed in papery pods. The wind opens their seed sacs, allowing them to create dense colonies notwithstanding the weather. Female Trees-of-Heaven can spread up to 300,000 seeds every year.

The Tree-of-Heaven can grow under harsh conditions. It can flourish in nutrient-starved roadside environments, railways, forest edges, and fencerows.

Our experts follow a late-season management calendar. This tool allows us to target Tree-of-Heaven roots instead of merely injuring their stems and barks.

Chinese Tallow

The Triadica Sebifera, or the Chinese Tallow, is a member of the Euphorbiaceae family. This designation means it is a flowering tree.

In 1776, this species came to South Carolina from China. During the era, business owners required a stable source of seed oil for soap, candle, and solvent manufacturing. City planners also began planting them aggressively as ornamental trees in many cities in the southeast.

Today, most Chinese Tallows live in ditches, stream banks, and dry sites upland. You can spot them by their three-lobed greenish fruits at the ends of their branches. They also sport yellowish flowers in April and June.

Chinese Tallows can invade undisturbed forests, alter soil conditions, and displace native vegetation. They are a controlled species in North Carolina. However, they are taking over many rural areas in Texas, Mississippi, Louisiana, and Florida.

Our arborists manage these trees with chemical treatments.

Call the Experts to Control Invasive Tree Species on Your Property

If you don’t know what to do with uprooted trees or how to control invasive tree species, call Frady Tree Care today at (704) 644-2516. We’ll give you a free consultation and quote.


Frady Tree Care has the most reliable and professional tree services in the Charlotte, Winston-Salem, Kernersville, Clemmons & High Point, NC areas! Our team is a third-generation certified and fully-insured arboriculture firm. With more than 100 years of combined experience, we are the tree service experts you can trust.


Charlotte Office

8640 Charlotte University City Blvd.  Suite A3-241        Charlotte, NC 28213
Phone : (704) 644-2516

Lexington Office

402 W. 4th Avenue,    Lexington, NC 27292
Phone : (336) 236-1006

Salisbury Office

1460 Henderson Grove Church Rd,
Salisbury, NC 28147
Phone : (704) 644-2516

Winston-Salem Office

1035 Shalimar Drive.      Winston-Salem, NC 27107
Phone : (336) 236-1006

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