Denver was settled in the early 1850s on a high plain grassland. There were no trees then besides the cottonwoods growing along streams flowing through the city. The trees you seen now in Denver were planted.
Denver’s dry climate allows American Elms to survive with many trees found in Washington Park. Washington Park got its name from a General George Washington. An elm tree was planted from a graft of a tree in Massachusetts on the spot where General Washington assumed command of the Continental Army in 1775. The elm tree died years ago, but the spot is surrounded by a fence and an inscription. Washington Park and South High School have over seventy species of trees. An eighty page Washington Park Tree guide can be purchased with a map of each tree.
Popular Trees in Denver
The streets along Washington Park, Bonnie Brae, Congress Park, City Park, Baker, Montclair, Mayfair, Park Hill and Hilltop are tree lined with silver maple, ash, walnut, American elm, honey locust, Siberian elms, ginkgo, Kentucky coffee tree, oak, and linden. City arborists encourage diversity and want to avoid monolithic tree species planting. Planting cottonwoods and silver maples in public right of way is a code violation. Click here for a list of trees recommend by the Denver Forester.