A spring stroll through nearly every neighborhood in Portland will reveal an interesting commonality. Portlanders love their flowering trees. However, not all flowering trees are created equal, and some are just more suited to the local environment than others. Our three favorites, which are also included on the City of Portland’s recommended plant and tree list, are the flowering dogwood, the flowering crabapple, and the magnolia. Here’s why:
Flowering dogwood: This versatile tree grows up to only about 30 feet, making it a perfect addition to a residential landscape.
The flowering dogwood has an attractive dark reddish-brown bark and emerald green leaves that turn bright red in the fall. In the spring, it’s easy to see where this tree gets its name, as its branches become an explosion of tiny white flowers that attract pollinating insects and birds. The tree is also known for its shiny red fruits that are devoured by wildlife from September through December.
Flowering crabapple: There are many species and varieties of this ornamental favorite, however most are shorter than 25 feet and fit well within the residential backyard, or alongside the street.
During spring, the flowering crabapple is awash in clustered, five-petaled pink or white blossoms that remain on the tree for several weeks. Flowering crabapples require little in the way of pruning, and have very low water needs once they’ve been established for a year or two.
Magnolia tree: Few flowering trees can compete with the beauty of the magnolia. Known for their intensely scented, large saucer-shaped flowers, the magnolia is a wonderful garden addition.
However, be aware that some species of magnolia get quite large and are not recommended for the smaller residential garden. Give us a call and we can recommend a variety that fits within the size and style of your landscape.