Top 5 Flowering Trees
Flowering Trees: Dogwood Trees -- Cornus Kousa
Flowering trees, also known as harbingers of spring, dogwood trees delight the eye with their delicately beautiful white or pink flowers. Actually, the flowers aren't flowers at all but bracts that surround the real flowers, which are tiny and greenish. Dogwood trees flourish in hardiness zones 5 to 8 and grow between 15 and 30 feet, with a 15 to 30-foot spread. They do well in full sun to part shade and thrive in woodland gardens. It does best in rich, acidic to well-drained, neutral soil. It needs moderate watering.
Not only does the dogwood produce its sensational blooms in spring, but the oval leaves pointed and about 4 inches long, are brilliant orange-red in the fall. The reddish-pink berry is edible, though most gardeners leave them for the birds to enjoy. The dogwood tolerates deer and attracts butterflies.
Flowering Trees: Crepe Myrtle -- Lagerstroemia
As the dogwood is a harbinger of spring, the crepe myrtle is a harbinger of summer, especially in the south. Its blossoms arrive on panicles on new wood, and colors range from purple to white to cream-colored to pink and red. This tree, which can grow from 1 to 100 feet tall, not only has beautiful flowers but beautiful, exfoliating bark. Crepe myrtles can be deciduous or evergreen. Their leaves are oval and opposite.
Lagerstroemia does best in hardiness zones 6 to 9 and flowers from July to September. It likes full sun and medium watering and needs to be pruned a bit every year to encourage new growth.
Flowering Trees: Magnolia -- Magnolia spp.
Like the crepe myrtle, the magnolia has both deciduous and evergreen species. The tree flourishes in zones 4 to 8, and the height of this ancient tree depends on its species. All of them have spectacular, sweet-smelling, cup-shaped flowers. The blossom of the bull bay can be a foot in diameter.
These trees do best in moist, loamy, acidic soil that's well-drained and in full sun to partial shade.
Flowering Trees: Tulip Trees -- Liriodendron tulipifera
Tulip trees are prized for their tulip-shaped spring flowers. They are bright yellow with a band of orange at the bottom of each petal and are about 2 inches long. Tulip trees can usually grow between 60 and 90 feet and have a spread of 30 to 50 feet. They do best in hardiness zones 4 to 9 in full sun and rich, well-drained, loamy soil, though they can tolerate soil that's wet and clayey. They're also deer and rabbit tolerant.
Flowering Trees: Redbud Trees -- Cercis
One of the first trees to flower in spring, this small tree, which grows to a height of 10 to 35 feet and has a similar spread, has pinkish-rose colored flowers that grow right from the branch. It is stunning when planted in small groups or a woodland garden.
Redbud trees have heart-shaped, 3 to 5 inch broad leaves. They grow in hardiness zones 4 to 10 and are not fussy about soil as long as the soil is well-drained.