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Thursday - March 17, 2011

From: Calgary, AB
Region: Canada
Topic: Trees
Title: Small trees for Alberta
Answered by: Anne Bossart


I would like to know if there is a short, 15 feet and under, deciduous tree that can be grown outside in Calgary, AB


Most of the deciduous trees that are native to your area will ultimately attain a size greater than 15 feet, although most forest trees grown in a suburban setting do not ever get as big as they do in nature.

So you could try:

Alnus incana (Gray alder)

Betula occidentalis (Mountain birch)

Sambucus racemosa (Red elderberry)

But you will likely have better luck looking for a large shrub instead of a small tree as they are usually multi-stemmed and more versatile in a garden setting. If you visit our Native Plant Database and do a Combination Search selecting "Alberta" and "Shrub" it will generate a list of 81 shrubs you could use.  The plant names on the list are linked to pages where you will find images and detailed infrmation about size and cultural requirements.

Here are a few suggestions from that list:

Alnus viridis ssp. sinuata (Mountain alder)

Amelanchier alnifolia (Saskatoon serviceberry)

Lonicera involucrata (Bear berry honeysuckle)

Myrica gale (Sweetgale)

Rhus glabra (Smooth sumac)

Viburnum opulus var. americanum (American cranberry bush)

Betula occidentalis

Sambucus racemosa

Alnus viridis ssp. sinuata

Amelanchier alnifolia

Lonicera involucrata

Myrica gale

Rhus glabra

Viburnum opulus var. americanum





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Trees in Canada (1995) Farrar, John L.

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