Plants - Trees and Shrubs

Pick the best tree to plant in your yard

Whether you're on a huge lot or a tiny piece of paradise, breathe life into your garden with the right tree

16 best trees for the Prairies
Trees across the Prairies are struggling to adapt to rising temperatures, erratic rainfall patterns and volatile weather conditions. The speed of climate change has meant tree species haven’t had time to adapt to extremes, so the search is on for specimens able to respond quickly to environmental changes while retaining their cold-hardiness and resistance to pests and disease. Here is a list of best bets.

NameHeight x Spread (m)Comments
Amur maple
(Acer tataricum ssp. ginnala)
Zone 3

5 x 3Compact, graceful; bright red fall colour
Paper birch
(Betula papyrifera)
Zone 2

12 x 5Requires moist soil; attracts birds; yellow fall colour
'Sutherland' Siberian peashrub
(Caragana arborescens ‘Sutherland’)
Zone 2

5 x 1Narrow, fan-shaped, with yellow flowers in June; drought tolerant
'Snowbird' hawthorn (Crataegus x mordenensis ‘Snowbird’)  
Zone 3

6 x 3Double, white flowers in June followed by red fruit; attracts birds
‘Patmore’ green ash (Fraxinus pennsylvanica ‘Patmore’)
Zone 3

15 x 8Seedless cultivar; drought tolerant
Colorado spruce cultivars (Picea pungens cvs.)
Zone 3

15 x 5Pyramidal shape; prefers well-drained, acidic soil; cultivars with deep blue needles are drought tolerant
Ponderosa pine
(Pinus ponderosa)
Zone 3

20 x 6Cylindrical shape; long, green needles and cinnamon-coloured bark
Quaking aspen
(Populus tremuloides)
Zone 1

10 x 5Most widely distributed tree in North America (Labrador to Alaska to northern Mexico)
‘Byland Green’ poplar
(P. x ‘Byland Green’)
Zone 3

15 x 7Upright; prefers moist soil; fast growing
‘Schubert’ chokecherry (Prunus virginiana ‘Schubert’)
Zone 2

8 x 4New leaves open green and turn purple in summer, white flowers; berries attract birds
Prairie Gem Ussurian pear 
(Pyrus ussuriensis ‘MorDak’) Zone 3

6 x 4Showy, white spring flowers followed by small, greenish yellow fruit
Golden weeping willow
(Salix alba ‘Vitellina’)
Zone 2

15 x 12Prefers moist soil; bright golden bark all year; very hardy
American mountainash (Sorbus americana)
Zone 2

8 x 5White flowers followed by vermillion berries; brilliant orange-yellow to reddish purple fall colour; attracts birds
‘Ivory Silk’ Japanese lilac (Syringa reticulata ‘Ivory Silk’)
Zone 3

10 x 7Creamy white flower clusters in late June
‘Dropmore’ linden
(Tilia x flavescens ‘Dropmore’)
Zone 3

12 x 5Dense, pyramidal shape; yellow fall foliage
‘Discovery’ elm
(Ulmus davidiana var. japonica ‘Discovery’)
Zone 3
12 x 9Excellent resistance to Dutch elm disease and aphids; golden fall colour

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