A tree that can warm your heart even on the coldest day of winter is the American sycamore (Platanus occidentalis). American sycamore is also known as American planetree, buttonwood and buttonball tree. American sycamore is native to 36 states, including Nebraska. You can go to just about any eastern Nebraska community and find at least a few larger sycamore trees. On farms it was (and still is) often planted for shade.
Green ash is abundant in Nebraska’s native woodlands and was commonly planted throughout the state after Dutch elm disease. However, the introduction of emerald ash borer has left the species in peril. We no longer recommend planting any native ash trees in Nebraska.
Black locust is one of the most adaptable and easy-to-grow trees for the urban landscape. Due to its showy aromatic flower, it has often been planted as an ornamental, but this practice should be discouraged due to the potential for spread by root suckers.