Need a small, Clean Ornamental Tree

Discussion in 'Landscape Architecture and Design' started by White Gardens, Oct 25, 2008.

  1. White Gardens

    White Gardens LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,783

    So I just finished the major part of this install. I feel I need some height in the backyard and I want to use an ornamental tree of some sort. I originally was thinking of a mimosa, but realized it would get just a bit too big and potentially weedy.

    I also have been thinking of a "White" red bud tree as they are a bit smaller than regular red buds, but do they become weedy like red buds. I'm drawing a blank.

    The flagstone path is going to be lined with small "blueish" perennials to help define the path, and there will also be a couple of prickly pear cactus and two Ruby Ribbons switch grasses.

    Any thoughts.

    back yard.jpg

    back yard.jpg
     
  2. White Gardens

    White Gardens LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,783

    Also, I want to not use a Japenese Maple.
     
  3. Kate Butler

    Kate Butler LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 640

    Do you mean (that with all that stone) you want something that does not shed it's leaves (a conifer of some sort)?
     
  4. White Gardens

    White Gardens LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,783

    Decidous would be fine. The owners have a leaf blower to keep the leaves away. If they didn't then a conifer would have worked.

    I was originally going for a Southwest type theme and I thought the Mimosa would look good with the grasses and cactus, but I'm finding out the the Mimosa seeds itself prolifically, the flowers are sticky, and it looks to be a bigger tree then I expected. The rock color didn't quit turn out "terracotta" like I had hoped too.

    I'm just looking for something not too trashy, with a maintainable shape in a small area. I feel a woody tree of some sort would help give me some height and fill in the area better.

    Also, I'm trying to make it a unique space and not use some of the more common trees you see everywhere, including red-buds, but the white variety to me would work.

    I've also thought about a rose of sharon, but It wouldn't get quite as high as I would like.

    Oh, and I'm also in zone 5. I might be able to use a warmer zone tree as it seems to have a micro-climate going on.
     
  5. Kate Butler

    Kate Butler LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 640

    Rose of Sharon are crazy-prolific seeders, although easy to pull out until their second year.

    'Canada Red' chokecherry will make a nice smallish tree and has red leaves. It can be a single trunk or multiple - depending on what your wholesaler can acquire for you.
     
  6. White Gardens

    White Gardens LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,783

    My supplier was telling me that there is a sterile variety of Rose of Sharon, but I don't know if I believe him or not.

    The chokecherry is a perfect shape and size, but I'm trying to stay away from the purple foliage on this one, only because of all the purples and browns going on in the back yard. I'm afraid it will "wash out" in all the color.

    I never thought a green tree would be my first choice.

    Thanks for all your help Kate, I'm sure your shaking your head by now. I keep hitting my head on the desk every 20 minutes or so. :hammerhead:

    I'm half tempted to go with a wind-mill palm and try to get about 10-15 years out of it before it would get too big.
     
  7. Tom B.

    Tom B. LawnSite Member
    Posts: 90

    Will any of these work ?

    Golden raintree
    Paperbark maple
    Tatarian maple
    Amur maple
    Serviceberry
    Hawthorn
    Crabapple
     
  8. Kate Butler

    Kate Butler LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 640

    I had thought about recommending hawthorn (Crataegus), but many folks are really resistant with the thorny aspect. Serviceberry (Amelanchier) would be my next suggestion. Crabapples are wonderful provided you get a variety that your local birds like (small fruited variety) - otherwise, they can be messy.
     
  9. Tom B.

    Tom B. LawnSite Member
    Posts: 90

    There are thornless varieties of Hawthorns and I believe the Spring Snow Crabapple is pretty much fruitless.
     
  10. JNyz

    JNyz LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,084

    Syrax Japonic [japanese snowbell] would be my choice, a very under used tree.
     

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