Lophostemon Conferta is a hardy, medium-sized tree growing to about 50 feet tall at maturity. Also known as Brisbane Box, this is an excellent choice for those who want a tidy shade provider that requires little to no water after six months of regular irrigation to establish the root system. If drought restrictions become necessary, this tree will endure handily. It is sturdy and columnar, with an upright handsome habit and inconspicuous seasonal white flowers. Brisbane Box will easily reach the heights of power lines, so avoid planting near them. Brisbane Box is a long-lived tree whose roots don’t heave pavement and hardscape, making them a popular street tree choice. In fact, the Sydney, Australia suburb of Haberfield has Brisbane Box street plantings dating to 1901. Brisbane Box tolerates most soils in our area and is frost-hardy to about 25 degrees. If you are looking for a clean shade tree that doesn’t require too much maintenance, you’d be hard-pressed to top Brisbane Box. For more information on this and many other plants, please visit Water Wise Gardening in Santa Cruz County.