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Trees & Shrubs

Prairie Hardy Shrubs

NAME

HEIGHT  

SPREAD

ZONE

LEAF

FRUIT / FLOWERS

FEATURES

BOG ROSEMARY

Andromeda polifolia

1-1½'

30-60cm

2-3'

60-90cm

2

needle-like blue-green

bell-shaped pink flowers & capsule

a slow growing, mounding shrub with pink flowers in the spring and leathery blue-green needle-like leaves

CHOKEBERRY - Autumn Magic

Aronia melanobarpa Autumn Magic

5'

1.5m

5'

1.5m

3

glossy green leaves turn red in the fall

white flowers, purple berries

a compact rounded shrub with white flowers, red fall colour and black berries.  Tolerant of moist to wet sites

BARBERRY

Berberis thunbergii cultivars

1-5'

30-150cm

1½-5'

60-150cm     

3

rounded leaves in green, yellow, and purple

yellow flowers and red berries

a colourful rounded shrub with thorny branches, yellow flowers, and red berries

BIRCH - Dwarf Arctic

Betula nana

2-3'

 60-90cm

2-3'

60-90cm

2

rounded green turns yellow in the fall

catkin

an adaptable dwarf shrub with rounded coarsely toothed leaves; tolerant of wet sites or dry sites

BIRCH - Trost's Dwarf

Betula tianschanica Trost’s Dwarf

4'

1.2m

4'

1.2m

3

bright green turns yellow in the fall

catkin

a dwarf mounding shrub with weeping branches and fine lacy green leaves; tolerant of wet sites

BOXWOOD

Buxus hybrida

2-5'

60-150cm

2-3'

60-90cm

3-4

leathery dark green

white flowers and capsule

dense globe to pyramidal shaped shrubs.  Needs to be planted in a sheltered site protected from winds

CARAGANA

Caragana arborescens

13-16'

4-5m

10'

3m

2

light green turns yellow in the fall

bright yellow, brown pods

hardy, upright, adaptable shrub.  Tolerant of heat, drought, salt, and wind.  Good choice for hedging.

CARAGANA - Globe

Caragana frutex Globosa

3'

90cm

3'

90cm

2

green turning yellow in fall

bright yellow,  brown pods

a dwarf uniform, globe-shaped shrub.  Tolerant of heat, poor soils, salt and wind

CARAGANA - Pygmy

Caragana pygmaea

3-4'

1-1.2m

4'

1.2m

3

green turning yellow in fall

bright yellow, brown pods

a rounded shrub with irregular arching branches; very thorny. Tolerant of heat, drought, poor soils, salt, and wind

SWEET FERN

Comptonia peregrina

2½-4'

75-120cm   

4-8'

1.2-2.4m

 2

fern-like green leaves turn orange in the fall

 white flowers, bur-like nutlet

low growing, mound forming shrub with aromatic fern-like leaves; drought tolerant

DOGWOOD - Siberian

Cornus alba cultivars

4-8'

1.2-2.4m

4-7'

1.2-2m

 3

green, yellow, variegated some with red fall colour

white flowers, white berries

upright rounded shrubs with bright red or yellow stems; tolerant of shade and moist soils

DOGWOOD - Red Osier

Cornus sericea cultivars

2½ - 10'

 .75-3m

2½ - 10'

.75-3m

3

green, green/white, some with red fall colour

white flowers, white berries

compact to upright rounded shrubs with bright red stems; tolerant of shade and moist soils

BEAKED HAZELNUT

Corylus cornuta

7'

2m

5-7'

1.5-2m

3

bright green turn yellow in the fall

catkin, beak-shaped nut

an upright spreading shrub with coarse leaves and bristly beak-shaped edible nuts; male and female plants

COTONEASTER

Cotoneaster acutifolius

10'

3m

7'

2m

2

dark green turning orange-red in the fall

pink flowers, black berries

a dense, low maintenance shrub; ideal for hedges

BROOM - Cyni

Cytisus nigricans Cyni

4'

1.2m

3'

90cm

3

green

yellow flowers, pods

a very showy, upright shrub with bright yellow flowers in the summer

DAPHNE - Rose

Daphne cneorum

1'

30cm

2-3'

30-60cm

3

small bright green

fragrant bright pink

a low growing, dense compact shrub with very fragrant clusters of bright pink flowers in the spring

BUSH HONEYSUCKLE

Diervilla lonicera

4'

1.2m

3-4'

1-1.2m

3

dark bronze-green turning red in the fall

yellow flowers, dry capsule

a mound forming spreading shrub with bronze-green leaves; disease and insects resistant, hardy, and adaptable

WOLF WILLOW

Elaeagnus commutata

7'

2m 

7'

2m

silver

yellow flowers, dry silver berries

an upright native shrub with fragrant flowers in the spring; drought and salt tolerant; great contrast plant 

BURNING BUSH - Winged

Euonymus alatus

6½-8'

2-2.4m

   6½-10'

2-3m

3

dark green turning bright red in the fall

yellow flowers, red capsule

a compact rounded shrub with corky ridged bark and brilliant red fall colour; shade tolerant

BURNING BUSH - Dwarf Winged

Euonymus alatus Compactus

5'

1.5m

6'

1.8m

3

dark green turning bright red in the fall

yellow flowers, red capsule

a compact rounded shrub with corky ridged bark and brilliant red fall colour; shade tolerant

BURNING BUSH - Turkestan

Euonymus nanus Turkestanicus

2'

 60cm

3'

90cm

3

narrow dark green turning bright red in the fall

purplish flowers, pink-red capsule

a small upright spreading shrub with brilliant fall colour; produces unique pink capsules with an orange seed

BAMBOO - Great Wall

Fargersia nitida Great Wall

10'

3m 

5'

1.5m

4

narrow bright green

n/a

a clump forming, upright bamboo with arching branches and dark purplish canes

FORSYTHIA - Northern Gold

Forsythia ovata Northern Gold

7'

2m

7'

2m

3

glossy dark green

bright yellow flowers, dry capsule

an upright spreading shrub that produces masses of yellow flowers before the leaves emerge in the spring

DWARF BROOM

Genista lydia

2'

60cm

2'

60cm

3

narrow bright green

bright yellow flowers

a low spreading shrub with arching angular stems; yellow flowers smother bright green stems in the spring

SEA BUCKTHORN

Hippophae rhamnoides

13-16'

4-5m

13'

4m

3

silvery grey-green

yellow flowers, bright orange berries

a large thorny shrub with silver leaves and orange berries; requires a male and female plant to produce berries

HYDRANGEA - Smooth

Hydrangea arborescens cultivars

3-5'

1-1.5m

3-5'

1-1.5m

3-4

medium to dark green

large white of pink

an upright rounded shrub with large clusters of white or pink flowers; part shade and moist soils required

HYDRANGEA - Bigleaf

Hydrangea macrophylla cultivars

3-5'

1-1.5m

3-5'

1-1.5m

4

soft dark green

large pink or blue

an upright rounded shrub that produces showy clusters of pink or blue (pH dependent) flowers in the summer

HYDRANGEA - Panicle

Hydrange paniculata cultivars

2-7'

.6-2m

3-8'

1-2.4m

2-3

dark green

large white, green, pink

an upright rounded shrub with large panicles of flowers in the summer; prefers part shade and moist soils

HONEYSUCKLE - Sakhalin

Lonicera maximowiczii sachalinensis

8'

2.4m

6'

1.8m

3

dark green turning yellow in the fall red purple flowers, red berries a rounded upright shrub, resistant to aphids.  Drought, humidity, and pollution tolerant

HONEYSUCKLE - Arnold Red

Lonicera tatarica Arnold Red

8'

2.4m

8'

2.4m

3

blue-green turning yellow in the fall

dark red flowers, red berries

a hardy upright rounded shrub with fragrant dark red flowers followed by red berries; adaptable to moist soils and sites

HONEYSUCKLE - Clavey's Dwarf

Lonicera xylosteoides Clavey's Dwarf

4'

1.2m

4'

1.2m

3

grey-green turning yellow in the fall

creamy white flowers, red berries

 a hardy, compact rounded shrub with creamy-white flowers; adaptable, shears well, and is drought tolerant

HONEYSUCKLE - Miniglobe

Lonicera xylosteoides Miniglobe

4' 

1.2m

4'

1.2m

3

blue-green turning yellow in the fall

creamy-white flowers, red berries

hardy, compact, globe-shaped shrub with creamy-white flowers; adaptable, drought, and salt tolerant

MOCK ORANGE - Blizzard

Philadelphus lewisii Blizzard

5'

1.5m

5'

 1.5m

3

dark green turning yellow in the fall

fragrant white flowers, capsule

a compact rounded shrub that produces masses of fragrant white flowers; an Alberta introduction

MOCK ORANGE - Golden

Philadelphus coronaries Aurea

3'

90cm

5'

1.5m

4

 golden yellow

fragrant white, capsule

a compact shrub with fragrant white flowers in the summer; great contrast plant

MOCK ORANGE - Minnesota Snowflake

Philadelphus virginalis Minnesota Snowflake

 7'

2m

5-6'

1.5-1.8m

3

dark green turning yellow in the fall

 fragrant white flowers, capsule

an upright vase-shaped shrub with arching branches; produces masses of large fragrant double flowers

MOCK ORANGE - Snowbelle

Philadelphus x Snowbelle

4'

1.2m

3'

90cm

3

dark green turning yellow in the fall

fragrant white flowers, capsule

an upright rounded dwarf shrub producing masses of double white flowers; Ag Canada introduction

MOCK ORANGE - Waterton

Philadelphus lewisii Waterton

7'

2m

5-6'

1.5-1.8m

3

dark green turning yellow in the fall

fragrant white, capsule

native to Alberta this upright rounded shrub produces masses of fragrant white flowers in the summer

NINEBARK - Center Glow

Physocarpus opulifolius Center Glow

8'

2.4m

8'

2.4m

3

yellow-green mature to bright red

white flowers, red seed pods

 an upright spreading shrub with colourful leaves and exfoliating bark

NINEBARK - Dart’s Gold

Physocarpus opulifolius Dart’s Gold

5'

1.5m

5'

1.5m

3

golden yellow

white flowers, red seed pods

a compact rounded shrub with golden leaves and exfoliating bark

NINEBARK - Diabolo

Physocarpus opulifolius Monlo

8'

2.4m

7'

2m

3

dark reddish-purple turning bronzy-red in the fall

white flowers, red seed pods

very hardy, easy to grow upright rounded shrub with rich dark purple leaves and exfoliating bark

NINEBARK - Little Devil

Physocarpus opulifolius Donna May

3-4'

90-120cm

3-4'

90-120cm

 

 

3

dark burgundy purple

creamy white flowers, red seed pods

a dwarf shrub with an upright rounded habit; dark burgundy leaves on upright red-brown stems

NINEBARK - Nugget

Physocarpus opulifolius Nugget

7'

2m

4'

1.2m

3

lime-green

white flowers, red seed pods

a dense compact rounded shrub with exfoliating bark, bright lime-green leaves, and white flowers

NINEBARK - Summer Wine

Physocarpus opulifolius Seward

5-7'

1.5-2m

5-7'

1.5-2m

3

crimson red

pink-white flowers, red seed pods

a compact, rounded shrub with deeply cut crimson-red leaves, pink-white flowers, and exfoliating bark

POTENTILLA

Potentilla fruticosa varieties

1½-4'

45-120cm

2-4'

60-120cm

2-3

blue-green turning yellow in the fall

yellow, orange, red, white, pink

very hardy, compact rounded shrub that flowers all summer; drought tolerant

CHERRY PRINSEPIA

Prinsepia sinensis

5-7'

1.5-2m

5-7'

1.5-2m

2

bright green turning yellow in the fall

yellow / red berries

rounded shrub with stiff, thorny arching branches; tart berries are good for eating fresh or for jelly

WESTERN SANDCHERRY

Prunus besseyi

4-5'

1.2-1.5m

5'

1.5m

2

silvery green turning red in the fall

white flowers, purple-black berries

Alberta native with an upright spreading habit; primarily used as a pollinator for plum trees

PURPLELEAF SANDCHERRY

Prunus x cistena

7'

2m

5-7'

1.5-2m

3

dark purple-red turning bronzy-red in the fall

light pink flowers, purple-black berries

excellent contrast shrub with purple leaves and fragrant flowers; avoid windy, exposed sites

RUSSIAN ALMOND

Prunus tenella

7'

2m

5'

1.5m

3

green turning scarlet-red in the fall

bright pink flowers, furry nut

an upright spreading shrub with narrow green leaves; produces bright pink flowers and a small almond-like nut

NANKING CHERRY

Prunus tomentosa

7-10'

2-3m

7-10'

2-3m

2

soft bright green turning yellow in the fall

white flowers, bright red cherries

a broad upright shrub with white/pink flowers and edible sweet-tart red cherries

DOUBLE FLOWERING PLUM

Prunus triloba var multiplex

6-8'

1.8-2.4m

8-10'

2.4-3m

2

green turning yellow in the fall

double pink, fruitless

a hardy upright rounded shrub with spectacular double pink flowers in the spring

AZALEA

Rhododendron x varieties

2½-5'

75-150cm

2½-5'

75-150cm

4

dark green turning bronze-red in the fall

yellow, pink, purple, orange, white

upright rounded shrub with fragrant flowers in the spring; prefers part shade and a moist, sheltered site

SUMAC - Grow-Low

Rhus aromatica Grow-Low

2½-3'

75-90cm

5-7'

1.5-2m

3

dark green turning red-orange in the fall

yellow flowers, velvety red berries

low spreading shrub with aromatic leaves and velvety berries that persist through winter

SUMAC - Staghorn

Rhus typhina

7-10'

2-3m

10-13'

3-4m

3

lacy dark green turning bright red in the fall

yellow flowers, velvety red berries

an open spreading shrub with velvety branches, lacy dark green leaves, and red fruit that persists through the winter

SUMAC - Tiger Eyes

Rhus typhina Bailtiger

6-7'

1.8-2m

6-7'

1.8-2m

3

 yellow turning scarlet-red in the fall

yellow flowers

a spectacular open-spreading shrub with deeply cut chartreuse leaves and rose-pink to purple stems

SUMAC - Western Smooth

Rhus glabra car cismontana

3-5' 

1.5m

6-7'

1.8-2m

3

green turning bright red in the fall

yellow flowers, velvety red berries

showy, drought tolerant shrub, vibrant fall colour and persistent red fruit; tolerant of poor, dry soils

WILLOW - Arctic

Salix purpurea nana    

4'

1.2

5'

1.5m

2

blue-green turning yellow in the fall

catkin, capsule

dwarf upright rounded shrub with purple stems and narrow fine-textured blue-green leaves

WILLOW - Blue Fox

Salix brachycarpa Blue Fox

3-4'

90-120cm

3-4'

90-120cm

3

blue-green

catkin, capsule

a small upright globe-shaped shrub with soft blue-green leaves and dark red-brown bark

ELDER

Sambucus sp cultivars

5-10'

1.5-3m

3-10'

1-3m

2-3

green, yellow, purple, variegated

white or pink flowers, red or black berries

fast growing upright rounded shrubs with clusters of flowers followed by berries; adaptable, easy to grow

BUFFALOBERRY

Shepherdia argentea

13'

4m

10'

3m

2

silvery-green

yellow flowers, red berries

native shrub with silver leaves, thorny branches, and red berries; requires a male and female plant for berry production

FALSE SPIREA

Sorbaria sorbifolia

7'

2m

7-8'

2-2.4m

2

bright green

white flowers, capsule

dense upright spreading shrub with ferny leaves and plumes of white flowers; great for difficult sites

FALSE SPIREA - Sem

Sorbaria sorbifolia Sem

3-4'

90-120cm

3-4'

90-120cm

2

orange-pink maturing to green

white flowers, capsule

dense, upright spreading shrub with colourful leaves and plumes of white flowers; great for difficult sites

SPIRAEA

Spiraea x varieties

½-6'

30-180cm

1-7'

30-200cm

3

varies based on variety

varies based on variety

compact shrubs with different showy flowers and colourful leaves; adaptable and easy to grow

SNOWBERRY

Symphoricarpos sp cultivars

2-4'

60-120cm

2-5'

60-150cm

2-3 

blue-green turning yellow in the fall

pink flowers, white or pink berries

compact shrub with rounded blue-green leaves and white or pink berries that persist through the winter

LILAC - Dwarf Korean

Syringa meyeri Palibin

4'

1.2m

5'

1.5m

3

dark green turn orange-red in the fall

lavender-pink flowers, capsule

a uniform, compact rounded, non-suckering lilac; masses of fragrant flowers in spring and fall colour

LILAC - Miss Kim

Syringa patula

4-5'

1.2-1.5m

5'

1.5m

3

green turning burgundy-red in the fall

lavender flowers, capsule

compact rounded shrub with fragrant light purple flowers and good fall colour

LILAC - Preston Hybrids

Syringa x prestoniae

7-10'

2-3m

5-7'

1.5-2m

2

dark green turning yellow in the fall

varies based on variety

vigorous dense, upright, non-suckering lilac; masses of fragrant flowers in the spring

LILAC - Late

Syringa villosa

10'

3m

7'

2m

2

dark green turning yellow in the fall

lavender-purple, capsule

upright, rounded shrub with very fragrant lavender-purple flowers in the spring

LILAC - French Hybrids (Common)

Syringa vulgaris

4-10' 

1.2-3m

4-10'

1.2-3m

2-3

dark green leaves turning yellow in the fall

varies based on variety

vigorous upright shrub that produces masses of fragrant flowers in the spring

CRANBERRY - American Highbush

Viburnum trilobum varieties

5-10'

1.5-3m

5-10'

1.5-3m

2-3

green turning red in the fall

white flowers, red berries

compact upright plant with lobed leaves, showy flowers and fruit; tolerant of shade and wet soils

WAYFARING TREE

Viburnum lantana

7-10'

2-3m

7-10'

2-3m

3

grey-green turning purple-red in fall

white flowers, black berries

compact rounded shrub with soft fuzzy crinkled leaves, clusters of white flowers and fruit, and fall colour; tolerant of shade

NANNYBERRY

Viburnum lentago

13-16'

4-5m

10'

3m

3

green turning purplish-red in the fall

white flowers, black berries

upright vase-shaped shrub with flat-topped clusters of white flowers, black berries, and fall colour; shade tolerant

SNOWBALL

Viburnum opulus Roseum

8-10' 

2.4-3m

8-10'

2.4-3m

3

green turning burgundy-red in the fall

large white flowers, sterile

a showy dense rounded shrub with ball-shaped clusters of white flowers and great fall colour; tolerant of shade

WEIGELA

Weigela florida varieties

1½-5'

45-150cm

2-5'

60-150cm

3-4

green, yellow, purple, variegated

pink or red, dry capsule

upright vase-shaped to rounded shrub produces masses of tubular flowers