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Which tree best for small gardens

Hi,  i'm a gardening novice and have a very small garden (6 x 8 meters).  I am in process if redesigning garden and thinking about plants to add.  I have houses on all three sides and would like to plant a tree to break up the view of the house behind us.  As the garden is very small I was originally looking at tuscan totem pole cypress trees. Then I looked at pleached trees and then saw people talking about silver birch.  I'm so confused now.  We are getting a new fence so wont see through to neighbours.  I do plan on planting bamboo in pots on new patio to screen new seating area but would love something for the birds.  Any suggestions are greatly appreciated.


  • fidgetbonesfidgetbones Posts: 15,331
    Maybe a crab apple in the top right corner, or an upright flowering cherry such as Amanogawa.  TBH in that small a garden I would stick to something you can easily cut down and control like a buddleja. No good for birds but they do attract butterflies.
    You don't stop doing new things because you get old, you get old because you stop doing new things. <3
  • Songbird-1Songbird-1 Posts: 2,972
    Hoheria tree, nice and light airy form, doesn’t grow too tall, can prune to desired height, lovely white flowers in summer.
  • I looked at the slender cherry, thought they looked beautiful and dont appear to take up much room.  I do already have a buddleja in a small pot I could plant.  The hoheria looks lovely and good that I can prune if it gets too unruly.  I wish I had a bigger garden but trying to make a little sanctuary with what I've got.   Thank you for  the ideas. 
  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 29,063
    One thing to remember is trees = shade. Consider the impact on your garden and those of your neighbours. 
  • That's what I'm worried about. Wouldn't want to cause shade for neighbours garden. 
  • You've got to have a little tree!
    Something with a light open canopy and ideally fruit, blossom, and leaf colour changes..suggest an amelanchia, or a crab evereste/golden hornet...have fun
  • LoxleyLoxley Posts: 3,966
    I think a smaller crab would be good, I used to like amelanchier but having grown one for a few years, they're too boring! Nice (brief) blossom and autumn colour but pretty dull otherwise. If you are anxious about size, Euonymus alatus might be worth a look. To me they have a very elegant look about them. Medlar can look nice. Don't overlook apple/pear trees, with the right root stock they can fit in small spaces very well, I think pears are especially decorative. 
  • LoxleyLoxley Posts: 3,966
    Or perhaps a Cornus, alternifolia or kousa are very nice if your soil is suitable
  • Songbird-1Songbird-1 Posts: 2,972
    edited August 2020

    This is ( part of ) our Hoheria tree, @Shimmer_77 ,it’s just grown above the top of a six foot fence this year. It will get pruned to just above the top in Autumn. It’s very airy form means that only slightly dappled shade is cast. You can just see the little white flower buds forming in early summer. It’s not wide either and tends to grow in a pyramid shape. It can grow to about 15-16 feet high( which apparently is a small tree!) but we won’t let it get that tall at all. 
  • Lots of interesting ideas but I think I'm swaying towards hoheria. I like the flowers and that it is not too wide so wont take over the garden especially as I can prune to size. @Songbird-1 are the leaves spiky to touch or is it just the look.
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