Small Flowering Ornamental Trees

You may want a flowering ornamental tree to add beauty to the landscape, to attract butterflies, hummingbirds and bees to the garden. But if you have limited space in your yard and cannot accommodate large trees, you'll want a tree that doesn't grow too large.

Franklin Tree

The Franklin tree (Franklinia alatamaha), native to Georgia, grows only 30 feet high. From July until the end of summer, the tree produces abundant, fragrant white blossoms that measure 3 inches in diameter. When fall approaches, the tree's green foliage turns red and orange before dropping to the ground. The Franklin tree grows well in U.S. Department of Agriculture zones 5 to 8. The tree requires acidic, well-draining soil that is high in organic matter. It grows best in partial shade but will tolerate full sun, however, its growth may become stunted.


The redbud (Cercis canadensis) grows to a height of 15 feet. It produces abundant green foliage that measures 4 inches in length and 4 inches in width. Blossoms appear on the tree in April before the arrival of the tree's foliage. The flower buds are purple but open in clusters of pinkish-purple flowers. The tree grows best in soil that is high in organic matter. It requires moist soil conditions and does not tolerate drought well until fully established. The tree grows best in USDA zones 4 to 9.

Flowering Dogwood

The flowering dogwood tree (Cornus florida) can grow up to 30 feet high but normally only averages 15 feet, according to Floridata. Each spring, the tree blooms continuously for two to three weeks. Flowers appear in shades of pink or white, depending on the variety. The bright green foliage measures up to 6 inches in length. Following flowering, 1/2-inch red fruit appears, which is adored by wildlife and birds. The tree grows well in USDA zones 5 to 9. It prefers to be planted in partial shade but will tolerate full sunlight. Once established, the tree tolerates drought well.

Purple Leaf Plum

The purple leaf plum tree (Prunus cerasifera) produces 2 1/2-inch reddish-purple leaves. Each April the tree is adorned with pure white or pinkish fragrant blossoms. Following flowering, 1-inch fruits appear, which are edible for humans, mammals and birds. The tree grows to a height of 25 feet. It is a short-lived tree and normally only lives 10 to 15 years, according to the University of Florida. The tree requires full sunlight for its leaves to be the most brilliant. When planted in shade, the tree's leaves turn green. The tree grows best in USDA zones 5 to 8.

Keywords: small flowering trees, small landscape trees, small garden trees

About this Author

Kimberly Sharpe is a freelance writer with a diverse background. She has worked as a Web writer for the past four years. She writes extensively for Associated Content where she is both a featured home improvement contributor (with special emphasis on gardening) and a parenting contributor. She also writes for Helium. She has worked professionally in the animal care and gardening fields.