Autumn is the best time to plant trees, this gives them time to establish a good root system for strong branches and thick lush foliage the following year.
When you are choosing a tree for your own garden whether it is small, medium or large. It is really important to find out the final height of the tree you are choosing and how long it takes to reach that height. Some trees are slow growing and might fit into a small garden when they are young, but as they grow they may take over the space, blocking out light in your garden, so always check the final size.
There are many trees and cultivars with a compact habit that will not grow and take over your garden space. A tree will add a stunning focal point to any garden and give you interest all year around.
You can choose trees with berries on to attract birds, or maybe blossom trees for early nectar for bees and pollinators or you may want a tree that gives you colour all year around. You can plant trees to grow your own fruit to feed the family. Whatever tree you choose there is one for every garden.
More people are planting trees in their gardens, as we fill up the vertical and low-level spaces in our gardens. Trees also provide natural canopies and provide much needed shade in some gardens. You can underplant your trees with plants that will tolerate some shade, such as lavenders or for a formal look buxus.
These are some of our favourite trees suitable for a small to medium gardens ;
Betula ( Silver Birch ) Beautiful upright trees, with slender trunk that have white and silver bark that peels on some trees. Green leaves and catkins in the Autumn time.
Malus ( Crab Apple ) Dense clusters of blossom in springtime followed by small fruits in Autumn and Winer, ideal plants for the birds.
Sorbus ( Rowan ) Good upright trees for a smaller garden, with larger clusters of berries in Autumn, most leaves turn to orange or yellow in Autumn.
Acer ( Maple ) Ideal as a statement tree in a pot or shady spot in a garden. Beautiful textured leaves with many turning from bright greens to fiery oranges and reds in Winter.
Pyrus ( Pear ) Can be upright or slightly more domed in shape. A profusion of blossom in springtime which the Bees love! Lots of ornamental fruit in the Autumn and some will change the colour of heir leaves too.
Magnolias – Stunning garden trees great for early Spring colour and interest with waxy green leaves and delicately coloured scented tulip shaped flowers in Spring.
Amelanchier ( Juneberry or Snowberry ) Beautiful small tree single or multi stemmed with lots of clusters of small blossom in Spring and drops of little berries on golden foliage in Autumn
How to plant trees
- Remove the pot from container-grown trees and any wrapping from bare-root ones. Tease out and unwind any circling roots and cut off any damaged ones. This will encourage the roots to venture out into the soil.
- Stand your tree in water so that its roots are damp. Then dig a square hole that’s slightly wider than the pot your tree is in, but no deeper. Square holes encourage the roots to spread out more. Gently move the soil around the sides and base so the soil is not compacted down too much when you plant the tree.
- Stand the tree in the planting hole, then check that the top of the root ball – or the dark soil mark on bare-root trees – is level with the soil on the surface so the tree is not planted too deep.
- Backfill around the tree with the soil you removed when digging the hole. Gently wiggle the tree to help the soil settle around the roots as you are putting the oil in. Gently use your heel to firm gently all around the top of the root ball to ensure that the soils is firm and will create contact between the roots and the soil. This is very important as roots will die if left sitting in any air pockets. If you need to top up the soil as you do this then gently add until you fell the tree is firmed into the ground.
- Water the tree well and then keep it watered during any dry spells for at least the first year.