Bird-friendly bushes/trees?

planningnutApril 10, 2008

Hi - I am looking for some large bushes/small trees that will grow happily with a huge maple tree that will attract birds and give them a place to be safe near my feeders.

I need 2-3 different species that will be in an area of mostly sun, with a little bit of late day shade from the maple.

I tend to love anything that offer seasonal beauty ie/ burning bushes, lilacs, forsythia etc. and am starting from scratch, so colour is not an issue.

Any suggestions?


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How about Hi-bush cranberries. They have lovely white flowers, red berries and also their leaves turn red in the fall. Grow fast as well. The same goes for elderberry bushes,

    Bookmark   April 10, 2008 at 7:31PM
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I've never heard of this one - just looked it up and it's beautiful! Great suggestion - thank you!

    Bookmark   April 10, 2008 at 8:32PM
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I have a 'Makamik' Crabapple that the yellow finches just seem to love. We also have old apple trees along the fenceline and they always have birds in them. I remember seeing a cedar waxwing eating the blossoms! Other bushes we have are Saskatoons, Amelanchier Canadensis. I call this my three season shrub because it has white flowers in spring, blue berries in summer and great red fall color. I bought these at Humbers and I believe you can also get them in tree form. Birds also seem to like sitting in my oak trees. Hope this helps.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2008 at 8:59PM
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sharont(z5 can)

Cedars to hide out in plus they provide an eating area after picking out their favoutite seed from your feeders.

    Bookmark   April 12, 2008 at 1:22AM
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glaswegian(5b, Ont)

I just bought the Dolgo crabapple on Fri for $69. It is an edible crabapple tree and it was about 12-15ft high and already budding out.

The good thing about this one, is that the flowers are fragrant. Also it's self-pollinating

    Bookmark   April 13, 2008 at 4:49PM
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kanuk(Zone 5 Qc Canada)

I'm looking for bushes/shrubs to do the same. Currently our trees are very mature and extremely tall so all the birds tend to stay 'way' up high and pretty much out of sight. I've been keeping an eye open as I walk the dog and have noticed that the most bird activity seems to concentrate in/around cedars as sharont has suggested. We "hear and see"... Bluejays, finches, sparrows, grosbeaks and Cardinals all together enjoying the protection & shelter provided by the cedars. As a result of their chatter I can now determine without knowing the area that cedars of some sort are just up ahead by the flurry of activity and song.
If you're not a sound sleeper you might not want to locate this too close to your bedroom windows. It's that packed with action from what I witness. Maybe it's because "spring is in the air"!
It's cedars for me ... or should I say ... "for the birds". Just my 2 cents.

    Bookmark   April 16, 2008 at 8:37AM
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clairabelle(z4 Quebec)

I agree, there's nothing like cedars to attract a crowd... of birds, that is! :) And don't forget our Canadian winters! Cedars provide not only a great hiding and nesting place (robins, in my case), but also excellent shelter during our winter storms and windy days.
There are a lot of varieties out there...

Another suggestion is the Sambucus canadiensis (elderberry, I think), which puts on a great show all throughout the season: pale yellowish-green leaves in early spring, cream-colored flowers in June, purple berries in summer and --HELLO-- birds galore in the fall as the berries ripen. Imagine a 'gaggle' of grosbeaks or ceder waxwings getting intoxicated on all that fermentation! lol Quite the sight! This large bush is fast growing but can be cut down early spring. I highly recommend it.

    Bookmark   April 16, 2008 at 3:03PM
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