Planting Trees in Edmonton - Best Trees and Shrubs to Grow

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Leaf it to Edmonton to show how trees and shrubs can transform a city into a lush, green oasis. Trees aren't just a feast for your eyes either. They're unsung heroes of the environment, purifying the air and offering a haven for wildlife.

However, before you plant a tree in your Edmonton home, learn about trees and shrubs that will flourish and stand tall against the city's climate challenges.

Yard Tree Green

The Challenges of Edmonton’s Climate

If you’re thinking of planting a tree, it’s crucial to understand the local hardiness zone. Edmonton falls within the Zone 4a category. This classification guides us in selecting trees and shrubs that are resilient enough to endure the cold winters and capitalize on the warm summers.

Another factor that plays a pivotal role in a tree’s success is its soil. Edmonton's varied soil types, from clay-heavy to sandy loams, may require different amendments to optimize conditions for tree health.

Incorporating organic matter, such as compost or peat moss, can improve soil structure, enhance water retention in sandy soils, or increase drainage in clay-heavy soils. Tailor your soil to meet your trees' needs, and you can have a beautiful, thriving garden.

Best Trees To Grow in Edmonton

Deciduous Trees

Deciduous trees tend to be dynamic, showcasing the beauty of the seasons.

Yard Tree Maple
Photo credits
  • Silver Maple. Notable for its vibrant fall foliage, this fast-growing tree provides quick shade. It adapts well to various soil types, making it a versatile choice for Edmonton gardens.
  • Mountain Ash. It stands out with its bright red berries and striking fall colours. Aesthetically, it’s one of the most beautiful trees that do well in Edmonton, and it’s very attractive to wildlife, too.
  • Burr Oak. Known for its hardiness and longevity. The impressive tree has a broad canopy and deep green leaves that turn yellow-brown in fall.
  • Parkland Pillar Birch. It is one of the most cold-hardy trees, ideal to brave Edmonton’s weather. It looks mighty, too, with its sleek, white bark, which is perfect for narrow spaces.
  • Larch. Unlike most conifers, larches are deciduous, shedding their needles in the fall after turning a brilliant yellow.

Evergreen Trees

Evergreen trees are the backbone of any garden, providing lush greenery all year round and adding structural depth to the landscape.

Blue Spruce
Photo credits
  • Colorado Blue Spruce. It offers stunning blue to silvery foliage that captivates through all seasons. Its pyramidal shape adds architectural interest to gardens—a popular choice for privacy screens and windbreaks.
  • White Spruce. Classic deep green needles maintain their colour throughout the year. It is ideal for creating dense privacy screens or as a standalone specimen in larger landscapes.
  • Douglas Fir. Though not a true fir, it's well-suited to Edmonton’s climate, offering impressive growth and longevity. It looks the part and requires minimal maintenance once established.

Fruit and Flowering Trees

Are you looking to add a splash of colour and the joy of harvest to your garden?

  • Ussurian Pear. Known for its stunning white spring blossoms and vibrant fall foliage, the tree produces hardy, edible fruits that can be used in jams. It looks good in both spacious yards and compact urban gardens.
  • Princess Kay Plum. Offers double white fragrant flowers in early spring, providing a breathtaking display. While the tree is primarily grown for its flowers, it may produce small quantities of fruit. Its small size makes it suitable for smaller gardens or as a statement piece.
  • Flowering Crabapples. Diversity in spades means you have a few varieties to choose from. The Sargent Tina, with abundant spring blooms and attractive fall fruits, works well for compact spaces. For larger space, the 'Dolgo' crabapple dazzles with its spring flowers.
Credits: Annette Taratuta, Princess Kay Plum

Top Shrubs for Edmonton Gardens

Flowering Shrubs

Flowering shrubs can transform any into a riot of colour and fragrance, offering visual interest from spring through fall.

  • Dwarf Korean Lilac. Blooms late spring to early summer with lavender to pink flowers, filling the garden with fragrance and colour. The shrub prefers the full sun to partial shade and well-drained soil.
  • Black Beauty Elder. With its dramatic dark purple foliage, this beautiful shrub blooms early to mid-summer. The Pinkish-white flowers contrast beautifully against the dark leaves, with edible berries following the blooms.
  • Roses Artist Series. For gardeners chasing year-round colour and continuous blooms, the Roses Artist Series cannot be ignored. This series includes a range of colours, from deep reds to bright yellows. The shrub is quite hardy, too, but requires the full sun, well-drained soil, and regular feeding and pruning.
Elderberry Shrub
Credit: Admitter, Elderberry

Evergreen Shrubs

Evergreen shrubs are the steadfast guardians of the garden, providing structure, colour, and life even in the coldest months.

  • Birds Nest Spruce. Its dense, dark green foliage forms a natural, nest-like shape that adds texture and depth to garden designs. This shrub thrives in full sun to partial shade and tolerates a range of soil types, requiring little beyond occasional watering once established.
  • Prince of Wales Juniper. A ground-covering evergreen shrub that features silver-blue foliage, intensifying in colour during the winter months. It is extremely drought-tolerant once established and thrives in full sun, making it an ideal choice if you’re looking for ground cover options with
  • Slowmound Mugo Pine. Ideal for small spaces or as a foundational planting, this shrub maintains a neat, mounded form without the need for regular pruning. Its rich, green needles provide a striking contrast against the winter snow, adding texture and colour to the garden throughout the year. It’s quite resistant to pests and diseases, making it a worry-free addition to any landscape.

Special Interest Shrubs

Special interest shrubs (like the ones below) speak to you in a language not everyone can understand. They offer distinctive attributes that capture both the eyes and the senses.

  • Sem False Spirea. This shrub stands out with its striking foliage that transitions from pinkish in spring to a vibrant green in summer and then to a rich, orange-red in the fall. It produces white, fluffy flower spikes in the summer, adding a delicate fragrance to the garden. The shrub adds a fantastic splash of colour and texture to any garden.
  • Dwarf Mockorange. This compact shrub is ideal for smaller gardens, where its showy, double-white blooms can really shine. The flowers emit a sweet, citrus-like fragrance in late spring to early summer, making it a delightful sensory addition to any space.
  • Saskatoon Berry. Not only does it provide beautiful white spring flowers and vibrant fall foliage, but it also produces delicious, edible berries in early summer. The berries attract birds and wildlife, while the shrub can be used for hedging or as a focal point in the landscape.
  • Red Twig Dogwood. Known for its vivid red branches, this shrub stands out spectacularly against the winter snow. Its white spring flowers and subsequent white berries attract birds and beneficial insects, adding biodiversity to your garden. It’s ideal for mass plantings and, like the Saskatoon Berry works well for borders or as a focal point in the landscape.
Sastkatoon Berries
Credits: John Freeland, Saskatoon Berries

Let’s Get to the Root of It with Green Drop

Turning your garden into a flourishing piece of heaven in Edmonton is no small feat, but with a bit of soil, soul, and Green Drop's tree planting expertise, it's a walk in the park.

From the majestic evergreens that never go out of style to the deciduous divas that make every season a show, your green sanctuary is just a plant away.

We also serve Calgary, Red Deer, Regina, Saskatoon, and Winnipeg.

Connect with Green Drop, and let’s sprout up your garden game!

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