7 of the Best Small to Medium Trees for Landscaping

Jeana Cadby
March 16, 2020

The sweet smell of spring flowers beckons the coming of seasons change. As birds and critters emerge from their winter hiding places, perching on budding branches, it seems the whole world is bustling with life. Adding trees to the landscape can foster a wonderful atmosphere of excitement and vivacity.

The diversity of landscaping trees provides the pleasure of a myriad of selections to choose from. Here are 7 stunning and noteworthy landscaping trees, ideal for small to medium spaces (and all 20-25 feet tall!)

Royal Raindrops Crabapple

Royal Raindrops Flowering Crabapple Flowers
Royal Raindrops Flowering Crabapple Flowers

Fragrant magenta-pink to burgundy blossoms adorn delicate branchlets, absolutely beaming in the full sun of a fresh spring morning. In the summer and fall, birds attempt to serenade the abundant and charming red fruits, delighting in the generosity of the Royal Raindrops Crabapple Tree. Find easy care and all-season appeal with glossy purple summer foliage turning to orange-red in the fall.

Growing in Zones 4-8, with a maximum height of 20 ft, and spread of 15 ft. 

More about the Royal Raindrops Crabapple Tree.

Ivory Silk Japanese Lilac

Ivory Silk Japanese Lilac Trees at Garden Gate
Ivory Silk Japanese Lilac Trees at Garden Gate

Late spring brings great anticipation for the creamy white blooms of the Ivory Silk Japanese Lilac Tree. Fragrant flowers appear in abundant clusters later in the season. Peeling bark creates added interest to the landscape, paired with lovely orange fall color. This pest and disease resistant lilac tree is also tolerant of most soil conditions and is attractive to wildlife.

Growing in Zones 4-8, with a maximum height of 20 ft, and spread of 15 ft. 

More about the Ivory Silk Japanese Lilac Tree.

Starlite Crabapple

Starlite Crabapples at our location in Pasco.
Starlite Crabapples at our location in Pasco.

Feathery white blooms are a spring spectacular, teasing delightful red fruits to follow. Crabapple trees are well known as wonderful ornamental trees, with consistently gorgeous spring flowers, and the Starlite Crabapple Tree is certainly no exception. Expect lovely yellow fall color with this medium sized crabapple tree.

Growing in Zones 4-7, with a maximum height of 25ft, and spread of 15 ft. 

More about the Starlite Crabapple Tree.

Weeping White Pine

Long, shaggy branches hang heavy with verdant green, like gentle giants with drooping arms. Adding unique texture to the landscape has never been an easier choice than with the Weeping White Pine Tree. Pruning during early growth will ensure compact form, and a wide canopy spread will trail downwards as it continues to grow.

Weeping White Pine Trees in #10's at Garden Gate Nursery.
Weeping White Pine Trees in #10's at Garden Gate Nursery.

Growing in Zones 4-8, with a maximum height of 20 ft, and spread of 15 ft. 

More about the Weeping White Pine Tree

Frontier Elm

Verdant foliage ruffled around sturdy upright branches reach outward as if to embrace the morning sunlight. The vigorous and handsome Frontier Elm Tree is a disease tolerant, medium sized elm tree boasting beautiful and unique burgundy color in the fall. An upright, pyramidal shape carries smooth grey bark, and vibrantly rich green foliage throughout the summer.

Frontier Elm Trees at Garden Gate Nursery
Frontier Elm Trees at Garden Gate Nursery

Growing in Zones 4-7, with a maximum height of 25 ft, and spread of 15 ft. 

More about the Frontier Elm Tree.

Blue Weeping Alaskan Cedar

A fleeting whiff of faint aromatic foliage paints a lasting memory of this beautiful and unique medium sized cedar tree. The Blue Weeping Alaskan Cedar Tree is quite accustomed to turning heads, with graceful branches curving gently along a pyramidal form. Year-round interest is found in the gray to blue-green needle color, widely spaced along branches, spreading outwards like a delicate feather.

Blue Alaskan Cedar Trees

Growing in Zones 4-7, with a maximum height of 25 ft, and spread of 6 ft. 

More about the Blue Weeping Alaskan Cedar Tree.

Columnar Norway Spruce

Dark green needles spaced along closely set branches create a dense wall of foliage, perfect to add a classic evergreen texture to the landscape. New growth appears bright green and seems to beam with vigor and enthusiasm. The slender and uniform shape of this medium sized spruce tree makes for a wonderful accent or perimeter tree and would be ideal for use as a windbreak as well.

Columnar Norway Spruce Trees at Garden Gate Nursery
Columnar Norway Spruce Trees at Garden Gate Nursery

Growing in Zones 2-7, with a maximum height of 20 ft, and spread of 6 ft. 

More about the Columnar Norway Spruce Tree

Conclusion

The best landscaping tree is one that has been planted in the right place to fit the right needs. Taking the time to understand the purpose and placement in the landscape will save time and resources in the long run. More information can be found about the USDA hardiness zones here.

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