Which tree would be best?

marymarie2007February 2, 2009

I would like to add trees with fruit for birds to my yard. I already have, in a large raised bed, a Serviceberry and four Blue Muffins, along with the standard perennials, cosmos, black eyed susan, cleome, coneflower, etc.

The tree will be planted near a picket fence with due west exposure. I am planning on three. I would like to use them for a windbrake, planting shade loving perennials, bulbs and shrubs under.

The candidates are:

Hawthorn-thornless

Chokecherry

Pagoda Dogwood

Crabapple

I am interested in pros and cons of each. Also if there is another better candidate you can recommend. Thanks!

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birding_nut(6)

Hmm, well, of the 4, Chokecherry (Prunus virginiana) spreads by suckers, so that should be considered where ever you plant them. That said, being a native plant and the number of birds that eat the fruit, it is a winner in my opinion. I have seen some sold as a tree (with a single stem) so their might be varieties out there that are less prone to suckering, but not sure. Chokecherry doesn't hold its fruit well into winter, so it is best as a late summer/fall food source. Overall, chokecherry grows less as a tree but more as a large shrub.

Hawthorns are great trees that don't get all that tall. Bonus is that many varieties hold their fruit into winter and a lot of wildlife eat the fruit.

Crabapples are also fantastic wildlife trees. Just make sure you get some with the smallest fruits possible so that birds can eat them. Those with larger fruits are less attractive to birds. The fruit on most will hold on throughout the winter. Crabapples also have a wonderful spring display of flowers compared to the two above and come in more colors than white. To me, nothing compares to a well grown crabapple tree in spring bloom.

I am unfamiliar with Pagoda Dogwood.

Hope this helps.

    Bookmark   February 4, 2009 at 12:10PM
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