Gardening Information Guides

Trees for Small Gardens

There are numerous trees that are small enough for planting into limited spaces but careful consideration is required when choosing them.

Height and spread is obviously the most important decision to be made because even small ornamental trees can eventually reach 7 metres high and 5m wide or more.

In most situations the spread of the tree is the most restrictive factor so you should choose a narrow columnar tree such as:

  • Prunus serrulata ‘Amanogawa’ / Japanese flowering cherry
  • Sorbus aucuparia ‘Fastigiata’ / Mountain ash, rowan
  • Sorbus ‘Joseph Rock’

If the height must be restricted, consider;

  • Acer palmatum ‘Dissectum’ / Japanese maple
  • Amelanchier laevis ‘Ballerina’ / June berry
  • Cercis siliquastrum / Judas tree

The above and other small garden trees have seasonal interest such as flowers, berries, interesting bark and beautiful autumn colours. Some having more than just one!

FLOWERS
  • Amelanchier / June berry
  • Cercis siliquastrum / Judas tree
  • Malus toringo / Crab apple
  • Prunus serrulata ‘Amanogawa’ / Japanese flowering cherry
BERRIES
  • Amelanchier / June berry
  • Sorbus aucuparia ‘Fastigiata’ / Mountain ash, rowan
  • Sorbus ‘Joseph Rock’
INTERESTING BARK
  • Acer griseum / paperbark maple

AUTUMN COLOURS
  • Acer griseum / paperbark maple
  • Acer palmatum ‘Dissectum’ / Japanese maple
  • Amalanchier / June berry
  • Malus toringo / Crab apple
  • Prunus serrulata ‘Amanogawa’ / Japanese flowering cherry
  • Sorbus aucuparia ‘Fastigiata’ / Mountain ash, rowan
  • Sorbus ‘Joseph Rock’
TOPIARY TREES

Other trees for small garden options are topiary trees. For example, Carpinus betulus (hornbeam) are large trees but can be maintained at small sizes due to their ability to withstand constant pruning and their regeneration of growth. Others include Fagus sylvatica (beech), Prunus lusitanica (Portuguese laurel) and Taxus baccata (yew). They can all be found in various stages of maturity in the following forms.

TOPIARY FORMS
  • Box head
  • Cone
  • Dome
  • Ball
  • Columns
  • Pyramids

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