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Flowering Trees for Small Yards and Gardens

By Edited Jan 16, 2014 1 1

You can buy flowering trees for any size yard or garden. The ideal tree has flowers PLUS fruit or flowers PLUS autumn color; it must not grow too large for the space and it should not have any poisonous parts.

If you only have a small space, you need to buy plants and trees that give double value. Yes, you can buy a flowering cherry tree, but you could buy a real cherry tree instead, that also has beautiful flowers and cherries as well.

Flowering Trees That Give Fruit Too

Apple trees

Grow well, irrespective of soil type. Apple trees have pink blossom, but to set fruit, you will need two varieties that flower at the same time, unless you buy a self-pollinating type. Apple trees are VERY easy to grow. Crab apple trees can be used as a pollinator for most apple trees.

Crab apple trees

These trees are very easy to grow with attractive pink blossom. Crab apples can be used to make jelly. The trees are commonly used as pollinators for apple trees.

Cherry trees

The blossom on a fruiting cherry tree is almost white, masses of flowers form along the branches, like cotton candy. No pruning is needed, but to flower and fruit you need to have lots of limestone in the soil, so if your soil is sandy, just buy garden lime and incorporate it in the soil all around your tree.

Quince Trees

Quince trees have blossom that varies in color between white, pink and red. The fruits are green on the tree and ripen to yellow after harvest. You can use the fruits to make quince jelly, which is delicious with cheese.

Pear trees

Pear trees are not as easy to grow as apple trees. They require a limestone-based soil to flower and produce fruit, so dig in plenty of garden lime at least three feet around the tree. To produce fruit they need warmer conditions than apple trees.

Apricot trees

Apricot blossom is white, but these trees will only produce flowers and fruit in warmer locations

Plum trees

Plum and damson trees have foliage that may be green or dark red. Their blossom is pink and they bear fruit easily once they reach maturity

Flowering Trees That Give Autumn Color Too

Rowan (Mountain Ash)

The rowan tree has very deep roots that enable it to survive on windy hilltops. It will never die of drought. It will eventually reach thirty feet in height, but will stay small enough for most yards for fifteen or twenty years.

It has clusters of cream colored flowers in spring that produce bright orange or red berries in August and September. Birds love these berries, so this tree is an essential part of any bird feeding strategy you may have.

The Rowan also has foliage that turns to an attractive red before the leaves fall, so this tree is a triple whammy and a must have tree for any back yard.

Flowering Trees That Attract Birds

Rowan (Maountain Ash)

See Above


This has beautiful very pale foliage in late spring and white flowers. Berries follow the flowers, but less prolifically than with the mountain ash. Leaves form late and fall early. Leaves are grey before falling. The whitebeam is not recommended as a tree for small back yards.


Hawthorn trees start small and rapidly grow to thirty feet or more. They are not suited to small spaces. They produce blossom that is either creamy or a deep pink. The creamy flowered hawthorn produces masses of berries in fall; the pink flowered variety usually has only a few berries.


Although many books class the amelanchier as a shrub it is grown as a tree in most gardens. It flowers earlier than most flowering trees, so helps attract insects to your garden. Attract insects and you attract birds, too. Flowers are a beautiful creamy color.

Flowering Trees That Attract Squirrels


You need to grow two varieties of almond tree if your trees are to produce any almonds. These trees need sunlight and you will need to thin them out so that the fruits receive sufficient light.


Hazel trees have male and female catkins in mid winter, encouraging insects and consequently birds into your yard. Hazel nuts will be produced once the tree reaches maturity after about ten years, but you will need to collect them before the squirrels do. To produce hazel nuts you will need two varieties because the tree is not self-fertile.

Flowering Trees That Are Poisonous


Laburnum trees are commonly grown in small yards and they are ideally suited in terms of size. Unfortunately, every part of the laburnum tree is poisonous. They produce long tails of trailing deep yellow flowers in early summer

Flowering Trees

Flowering Cherry trees

Flowering cherry trees produce so many pink flowers that it is like pink snow on the ground when the blossom falls. These trees never produce any fruit and they do not support any insects. Flowering cherry trees do grow to about twenty feet, but they will remain small enough for the yard for many years.

Flowering Almond trees

The flowering almond will flower easily, but produces no almonds. The blossom is either white or pale pink. There is a columnar variety called 'Erecta' that is very useful if your space is limited. This variety can look stunning, especially in groups of three trees in a corner of your front yard.


Willow trees are available in a wide range of shapes and sizes, so make sure you buy one that will not grow to sixty feet high. They produce catkins in very early spring, much appreciated by insects at this time of year. Insects in spring provide a useful food supply for many birds.


Robinia trees have fragrant flowers in early summer. Sometimes called the False Acacia, the tree has divided leaves similar to those of the mountain ash or rowan tree.


Magnolia trees with their enormous, swollen flower buds in late spring make a wonderful addition to any small yard. They are slow to grow and take many years to reach their full magnificent glory, so you will need to have patience.



Jul 23, 2010 10:11am
Wonderful advice for planting flowering trees in small gardens and yards. Keep writing, you are a gardening pro!
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