Flowering Trees and Shrubs – Blooms at the Bartlett Arboretum

Depending on where you live, the landscape may already be bursting with flowering trees and shrubs. Or, maybe you’re still anxiously awaiting for signs of the season. Whichever is the case, trees and shrubs that flower are often some of the earliest harbingers of spring. At The Bartlett Tree Research Laboratories and Arboretum, we have a fully equipped diagnostic laboratory, scientific test plots, an education center and an arboretum with over 15,000 plants. Throughout the year, the arboretum’s specimens showcase their beauty. Of course, in spring, they put on a particularly spectacular show! Here are some groups of flowering trees and shrubs from our arboretum that also make great additions to home landscapes as well.

Rhododendrons for a Variety of Hues and Sizes

Both azaleas and rhododendron belong to a single genus, Rhododendron. They are hugely popular and for good reason. The varied species come with all sorts of flower colors, flowering dates and foliage traits. These plants prefer well-drained soil and are subsequently prone to phytophthora root rot disease. Pest problems are another common concern as well as damage from deer so be sure to monitor for insects as well as evidence of deer feeding activity.

Camellias for a Color Pop in the Right Growing Zones

With bloom times ranging from November to April, camellias are the star of the landscape when little else is blooming. In addition to their flowers, camellias have glossy evergreen leaves that make them a great choice for year-round interest. Cold winter temperatures are the limiting factor to camellia growth. Subzero temperatures can kill most varieties so take care when selecting specific varieties as well as planting location in the landscape.

Magnolias for Drama, Diversity and Resilience

There aren’t many flowering trees and shrubs that make such a bold statement in spring as magnolias. Their dramatic blooms make a big impact in a landscape. Even once the flowers have faded, the dark green and glossy leaves remain. Magnolias make an ideal specimen tree but are equally versatile when planted in a group for a screen or privacy hedge. Though their flowers seem delicate, the tree itself is hearty and can flourish in many climates.

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