Flowering deciduous trees

Get double the pleasure from a landscape tree when you choose one that flowers. Generally, the show is early in the gardening year, and generally, it doesn't last long. But that brevity doesn't mean you can't revel in its beauty. Favorite flowering trees include crabapple, dogwood, Japanese tree lilac, ornamental pear, flowering cherry, redbud, and fringe tree.

Depending on what's going on nearby or in the rest of your garden, the flower color of your flowering tree may or may not be a part of a larger display. An easy way to avoid a clash is to plant a white-flowered tree — or conversely, to favor white-flowered spring bulbs, perennials, and shrubs in the vicinity. But if you're daring, beholding some red tulips at the feet of a red-flowered dogwood or a redbud tree — or the Easter-egg hues of pink and purple hyacinths skirting a cherry tree — can be a real thrill.

For best results, observe your new tree's flower color — and blooming duration — for one spring or two. That way, you can decide whether existing companions please you or whether you should install some good ones for next year.

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