How to - Gardening Resources

Skinny trees for tight spaces

Trevor Cole
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These slender specimens will squeeze into the tiniest garden

Flowering trees
These are grown for their showy flowers and sometimes equally showy fruits.

Single seed hawthorn (Crataegus monogyna ‘Stricta')10 x 4White flowers; red fruit; lustrous dark green foliage; susceptible to fire blight3
Upright Siberian crabapple (Malus baccata ‘Columnaris') 9 x 2.5 to 3White flowers; small, yellow fruit; new foliage tinged bronze, turns green3
Madonna crabapple (M. ‘Mazam') 6 x 3Double, white flowers from pink buds; yellow fruit; new foliage tinged bronze, turns green4
‘Pink Spires' crabapple (M. ‘Pink Spires') 6 x 4Pink blooms from darker buds; purple-red fruit; new foliage reddish purple, turns copper5
‘White Candle' crabapple (M. ‘White Candle') 4.5 x 1.5Semi-double, white flowers; red fruit; foliage dark green, persists into fall4
‘Spire' flowering cherry (Prunus x hillieri ‘Spire') 20 x 3Pink flowers; red fruit; orange-red foliage in fall; shiny, copper-coloured bark5b
‘Amanogawa' Japanese flowering cherry (P. serrulata ‘Amanogawa') 8 x 3Pink, semi-double, fragrant flowers; black fruit; bronze-red foliage in fall 6
‘Capital' callery pear (Pyrus calleryana ‘Capital') 12 x 5White flowers; inconspicuous, pear-like fruit; copper fall foliage; resistant to fire blight5b
Chanticleer callery pear (P. c. ‘Glen's Form') 12 x 6White flowers; inconspicuous, pear-like fruit; red fall foliage5b
Upright oakleaf mountain ash (Sorbus x thuringiaca ‘Fastigiata')8 x 3White flowers; showy red berries; dull yellow fall foliage; resistant to fire blight5

Trees for fall colour
While some flowering trees have good fall colour, others are worth considering for their outstanding autumn colour alone, such as narrow cultivars of red and sugar maples.
‘Armstrong' red maple(Acer x freemanii ‘Armstrong')
15 x 6Fast-growing; smooth, silvery grey bark; fall foliage a good red 3
‘Karpick' red maple(A. rubrum ‘Karpick')
15 x 6Distinctive red twigs; yellow to red fall foliage (yellow if mild autumn)3
‘Newton Sentry' sugar maple(A. saccharum ‘Newton Sentry' syn. ‘Columnare')
10 x 2.5Orange-yellow fall foliage; loses central leader and grows with several parallel stems4
‘Green Column' sugar maple(A. s. ssp. nigrum ‘Green Column')
20 x 7Orange-yellow fall foliage; keeps central leader4
‘Temple's Upright' sugar maple (A. s. ‘Temple's Upright' a.k.a.‘Monumentale')
20 x 5Orange-yellow fall foliage; keeps central leader4
Princeton Sentry maidenhair tree (Ginkgo biloba ‘PNI 2720')
12 x 3Distinctive, fan-shaped leaves; bright yellow fall foliage; male clone (no smelly fruit)4
Upright European aspen (Populus tremula ‘Erecta')
20 x 4Yellow fall foliage; less disease-prone than Lombardy poplar2
‘Tower' poplar (P. x canescens ‘Tower') 20 x 4Yellow fall foliage; almost disease-free; male clone; doesn't produce cotton2

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