Trees make the landscape. They provide a structural and visual anchor from which you can build the rest of the garden. However, not all of us have the space for a large tree.
Many people are growing beautiful gardens in small landscapes. They live in houses that are close together or have shallow front yards. Don’t let that stop you from planting a tree or two. Here are several spectacular specimens that top out at no taller than 25' when fully mature. They're perfect for providing a beautiful anchor and dynamic visual interest in even the most compact garden space.
Find the perfect small trees for Zones 4-7 here.
Majestic Beauty® Fruitless Olive
(above) Upright beauty whose open branching habit and long, narrow gray-green leaves give it an airy appearance. Superior patio or garden tree that does not produce messy mature fruit. Thrives in hot, dry areas. Evergreen. Slow growing up to 25 ft. tall and wide. Zones 8–1.1
Beautifully Blooming Small Trees for Zones 7-11
Timeless Beauty® Desert Willow
Need a gorgeous tree for your drought-tolerant and/or firewise landscaping? You've found the perfect tree with Timeless Beauty. A long-blooming, seedless selection with fragrant, tubular, burgundy, and pale-lavender blooms that appear in clusters at branch ends. This is a gorgeous specimen for anchoring a border, or as a large patio container feature. Moderate growing; reaches up to 15 to 20 ft. tall and wide. Zones 7-9.
Panicles of pure white flowers bloom all summer with glossy dark green leaves that turn vibrant orange-red in fall. Makes an excellent specimen, accent, or group planting. Deciduous. Reaches up to 20' tall and wide. Zones 6–9.
Little Gem Dwarf
Little Gem's narrow, compact form makes it perfect for narrow beds and corners. The large, glossy evergreen leaves have rusty-brown undersides. Large, white fragrant flowers bloom in late spring through summer. Evergreen. Moderate grower to 20-25' tall and 10-15' wide. Zones 7-9.
This stately upright grower creates a beautiful focal point as a small tree or multi-trunked shrub. Thick glossy leaves provide a backdrop for late winter single white flowers. Evergreen. Reaches up to 12 ft. tall and 6 ft. wide. Zones 8–10.
Small Trees with Unique Foliage for Zones 7-11
Multiple stems sprawling beautifully through companions when planted in shade; in full sun, develops into a graceful small tree. Brilliant fall color. Deciduous. Moderate grower to 20 ft. tall and wide (smaller in full sun). Zones 6–9.
A unique mimosa that provides a wide, umbrella-shaped canopy with beautiful bronze-green, fern-like leaves. Foliage deepens to rich chocolate-burgundy color in summer. Delicate pink blooms appear in late summer. Fast grower reaches up to 20' tall, 15' wide. Zones 7-10.
Our exclusive Icee Blue selection is the first podocarpus tree with distinctive blue foliage! New growth emerges lime-gray-blue and matures to a cool gray-blue-green, making for a dynamic visual appeal. Evergreen. Slow grower reaches 15-25' tall and wide. Zones 9-11.
Small Trees with Tasty Fruit for Zones 7-11
Especially tasty, brownish-purple fruit produced twice each year: late spring and late summer. Makes a beautiful specimen for garden or landscape with light annual pruning. Deciduous. Reaches up to 25' tall and wide. Zones 7-9.
Simply the best pomegranate on the market! Bright orange-red flowers are followed by large, vivid red fruit that ripens in early fall. Less pulp and higher juice content than others, with seeds soft enough to be eaten. Deciduous. Moderate grower to 10' tall and wide. Zones 7–11.
A versatile, easy-care shrub that can be pruned into a beautiful small tree or trained as an espalier or hedge. The upright branching form, edible flowers, and tasty tropical fruit make it a favorite for warm climate gardens. Perfect as a small specimen tree for landscapes and containers. Evergreen. Moderate grower to 10 to 15' tall and wide. Zones 8-10.
Good to Know
How far from a house’s foundation should you plant a 25 ft. at maturity tree?
Here is a good rule of thumb when planting a tree away from the house. Use the distance equal to one-third to one-half the maximum tree height.
Let us do the math here: no less than twelve feet from the house. Tree roots can grow beyond the canopy of a tree, so some wiggle room is a very good idea.