Not many can say this but I am married to a State Arbor and Soils champion. When we first started dating, I made a fun little game of making him identify random trees on car rides until I eventually picked up on identifying a few myself. While most homeowners don't need to know their trees to a champion level, landscaping with trees can add easy curb appeal and knowing the basics is essential to making wise choices.
1. Figure out what types of trees you like and what types of trees you definitely don’t like. Research your top tree choices. Missouri Urban Trees Guide I used to think that fruit trees were my favorite. Had I done a little research, I would have found that fruit trees require attention and work. Allergy suffers are not going to be able to live with a pollen showering tree like an oak. The Bradford pear tree has become popular, but research finds the Missouri Department of Conservation Department discourages planting the this type of tree. (Find out why HERE.)
2. Learn what types of trees your yard likes. Give consideration for moisture needs, sun, and room requirements. Have utilities marked before you dig and measure your trees diameter to determine the best placement. Planting a tree close to the sewer line can cause as much problem as planting right on top of it. After determining what lies beneath, look up. Measure the diameter of the mature tree from your spot to ensure it will not interfere with electrical lines, encroach on a neighbor’s property, or come in contact with your home.