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Spring Flowering Trees

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Flowering trees are among the most popular ornamental plants. Spring flowering trees are especially valued for the bold way they signal the start of the warm time of the year.

Flowering crab apples, dogwoods, hawthorns, redbuds, and cherries are harbingers of spring. Flowering trees make a tremendous impact in bloom even if many bloom only for a few weeks

If you have room in your garden, include at least one tree that will bloom in spring. Set flowering trees against a backdrop of evergreens or place them where they will stand out against the spring sky.

How to choose a flowering tree

When choosing a flowering tree consider the following: (1) will the tree grow and thrive in your region, your growing zone; (2) what will be the height and spread of the tree at maturity–be sure it will fit in your garden; (3) where is the best location to feature the tree; do you have room for the impact of three or more flowering trees; (4) does the tree have additional features–colorful bark, fall leaf color, or colorful fruit.

Yoshino cherry
Yoshino cherry, Prunus x yedoensis Awanui

Spring flowering trees

A-C Common NameBotanical NameZone
Acacia, BaileyAcacia baileyana8-10
Cherry, KwanzanPrunus serrulate ‘Kwanzan’5-8
Cherry, SargentPrunus sargentii4-7
Cherry, weeping HiganPrunus subhirtella ‘Pendula’4-8
Cherry, YoshinaPrunus x yedoensis5-8
Chokecherry, AmurPrunus maackii2-6
CrabappleMalus spp.5-8
Crimson bottlebrushCallistemon citrinus8-11
Chinese Fringe Tree, Chionanthus retusus
Chinese Fringe Tree, Chionanthus retusus
D-M Common NameBotanical NameZone
Desert willowChilopsis linearis8-9
Dogwood, floweringCornus florida5-9
Dogwood, KousaCornus kousa5-8
Fringe tree, ChineseChionanthus retusus6-8
Hawthorn, thornless cockspurCrataegus crus-galli ‘Inermis’4-7
Hawthorn, WashingtonCrataegus phaenopyrum3-9
Magnolia, saucerMagnolia x soulangiana5-9
Magnolia, starMagnolia stellata5-9
Magnolia, sweet bayMagnolia virginiana5-9
Pyrus calleryana
Callery pear tree, Pyrus calleryana
M-R Common NameBotanical NameZone
Maple, redAcer rubrum3-9
Mayday treePrunus padus commutata3-6
MesquiteProsopis glandulosa10-11
Mountain ash, EuropeanSorbus aucuparia3-6
Palo verde, TexasCercidium texanum9-10
Pear, calleryPyrus calleryana4-8
Plum, NewportPrunus cerasifera ‘Newport’4-8
Plum, purple leafPrunus cerasifera ‘Atropurpurea’4-8
RedbudCercis canadensis3-9
Russian oliveElaegnus angustifolia3-8
Trumpet tree, Tabebuia chrysotricha
Trumpet tree, Tabebuia chrysotricha
S-Z Common NameBotanical NameZone
Sea grapeCoccoloba uvifera10-11
Serviceberry, AlleghenyAmelanchier laevis4-8
Serviceberry, downyAmelanchier aborea4-9
Serviceberry, shadblowAmelanchier canadensis3-8
Snowbell, JapaneseStyrax japonicus5-8
Trumpet treeTabebuia chrysotricha10-11
Yellowwood, AmericanCladrastis kentukea6-8

Also of interest:

Trees in Garden Design

Trees with Autumn Color

How to Plant a Tree

Written by Stephen Albert

Stephen Albert is a horticulturist, master gardener, and certified nurseryman who has taught at the University of California for more than 25 years. He holds graduate degrees from the University of California and the University of Iowa. His books include Vegetable Garden Grower’s Guide, Vegetable Garden Almanac & Planner, Tomato Grower’s Answer Book, and Kitchen Garden Grower’s Guide. His Vegetable Garden Grower’s Masterclass is available online. has more than 10 million visitors each year.

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