Trees are a huge investment and a big part of any landscaping you do. You want them to be beautiful now and for years to come. In order to get the most out of the trees you plant you must carefully select a variety that will thrive in the particular yard and climate you live in.
While just about anything grows well in Vancouver some trees will grow better than others. Native species are well adapted to the climate and conditions in the Lower Mainland. Some imported species also do quite well in Vancouver. If you want an expert opinion it never hurts to consult with an arborist prior to planting trees in your yard.
Many different varieties can be found in Vancouver but not all are equal in disease resistance and maintenance required. Here are the best trees to plant in Vancouver.
The name Arbutus will be familiar to Vancouverites from the section of streets named after trees in Kitsilano. Arbutus trees are known for their beauty. They are native to British Columbia.
The Garry Oak is a native tree of British Columbia. The Garry Oak is a medium sized tree with thick dark grey bark and a round canopy.
Several members of the Birch family are native to British Columbia. These include the Mountain Alder, Red Alder, Green Alder, Scrub Birch, Alaska Paper Birch, Water Birch, Paper Birch, Low Birch and Silver Birch. The European Birch was introduced and has thrived in the Lower Mainland. Young’s Birch trees are good for small spaces with shade. They like moist soil. The Himalayan Birch is sought after for its white trunk and full branches. It looks good year round.
Three members of the cypress family are native to British Columbia: the Yellow Cedar, Western Red Cedar and Rocky Mountain Juniper. The Yellow Cedar is a medium sized tree that grows in a cone shape. The Western Red Cedar is a large tree with a wide base and dropping leaves. Rocky Mountain Junipers are short and shrubby with irregular leaves.
The Western Flowering Dogwood is native to Vancouver. It grows to be small to medium in size. It has a short trunk with branches spreading out horizontally. The flowers are beautiful. A cross of the Western Flowering Dogwood and Eastern Dogwood known as Eddie’s White Wonder is popular. It is disease resistant with colourful flowers.
There are four species of maple tree that are native to British Columbia and two introduced species that do well here. The Vine Maple, Douglas Maple, Big leaf Maple and Manitoba Maple all grow naturally in the Lower Mainland.
The Norway Maple from Europe and Southeast Asia has a large round canopy when it reaches maturity after about 20 years. Don’t plant them in hot and dry spots. The Paperback Maple from China has nice bark and beautiful full leaves. It thrives in spots that are partially shaded with good drainage. Most varieties of Japanese Maple grow well in Vancouver.