Jorge, Plants, Trees

10 Stunning Trees For Small Gardens

Thanks to breeding programmes and the occasional sport in the nursery, there are now more trees for small gardens than ever before, perfect for your patio pot or as a centrepiece on your lawn.


Eventual height and spread: some trees are as wide as they are high. Trees with a upright habit will take up less space than a spreading tree at the same height.

Planting in pots: planting in pots will naturally reduce a tree’s size. Key is to ensure adequate moisture / nutrient levels by using a potting mix composed of compost and garden soil and using mulch.

Species: crabapples and rowans both look fantastic as small trees and will add year round colour to your garden. Both are perfect for attracting wildlife with the crabapples’ long-lasting blossom and fruits, and the rowan’s long lasting berries. Both have good selections of dwarf species/varieties and are worth checking out before any purchasing decision.

Trees Under 3m

Prunus incisa ‘Kojo-no-mai’

This dwarf flowering cherry produces a long-lasting profusion of white flowers on complex zig-zagging branches. Unusually small for a cherry, and suitable for pots, this is the ideal variety for magical spring blossom in a small garden.

fuji cherry tree

Prunus ‘Frilly Frock’

With variegated leaves, stunning spring blossom and unmatched autumn colour, ‘Frilly Frock’ is a truly magical weeping tree.

dwarf cherry blossom

Salix caprea ‘Kilmarnock’

‘Kilmarnock’ produces bright fuzzing anthers from pendulous stems, which evolved to catch pollen grains floating in the wind. This architectural variety makes an excellent centrepiece.

salix caprea kilmarnock

Salix integra ‘Hakuro Nishiki’

Known as the flamingo or shrimp willow naturally produces a lollipop shape with gorgeous cream-pink tinged foliage on coral-pink stems.

shrimp willow

Malus ‘Toringo Aros’

Winner of the ‘Best in Show’ at the National Plant Show in 2017, this crabapple is truly something to behold, if you can get your hands on it! A showstopper, ‘Toringo Aros’ produces stunning pinks and purples throughout the warmer months and as a crabapple will attract an array of wildlife to your garden.

toringo aros

Trees Under 5m

Cercis canadensis ‘Forest Pansy’

Another tree with gorgeous tones of pink and purple, this redbud is notable for its large glossy leaves which start ruby red before turning a deep purple. It produces small, intricate flowers in an abundance come March.

Malus ‘Jelly King’

This crabapple creates an unmatched display for such a small tree with spectacular pink-orange fruits. Be sure to have a go at jelly-making!

crabapple jelly king

Sorbus vilmorinii / Sorbus vilmorinii ‘Pink Charm’

Gorgeous pinnate leaves, which turn purple in autumn, and large bunches of pink berries, which are perfect for attracting birds. ‘Pink Charm’ is a new ostensibly improved variety with larger, more vibrant berries. Both are AGM, however.

sorbus vilmorinii pink charm

Upright Trees

Prunus ‘Amanogawa’

Although reaching 8m high, this cherry has a 3m spread. ‘Amanogawa’ has all the traits of a classic cherry with fragrant double pink flowers and stunning autumn colour.

Sorbus ‘Autumn Spire’

Similar in size to ‘Amanogawa’, ‘Autumn Spire’ is an offshoot of ‘Joseph Rock’, and possesses the same great features (yellow berries and vibrant autumn colour), but with a compact columnar habit.

Jorge at PrimroseJorge works in the Primrose marketing team. He is an avid reader, although struggles to stick to one topic!

His ideal afternoon would involve a long walk, before settling down for scones.

Jorge is a journeyman gardener with experience in growing crops.

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