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Hardy Flowering Shrubs and Trees

When choosing perennials in the Edmonton area, you have to choose something that can last our frigid winters, but that doesn’t mean you are limited to coniferous varieties! These shrubs and trees are gorgeous in the landscape, and they’ll keep coming back year after year.

Hardy Flowering Shrubs


This hardy flowering shrub is a favourite for landscape design and for cooking! Elderberry shrubs have bright, showy white flowers and dark berries, displayed against lush green foliage. It grows relatively quickly and can reach up to 12 feet in height! It’s easy to care for, though requires a lot of water. Some basic pruning in the early spring and managing invasive weeds and suckers is enough to keep this plant happy. Be sure to let the berries turn dark purple or black before harvesting!



This flowering shrub is a classic for its beauty and hardiness! Spiera grows quickly and is very low maintenance. Only some varieties are hardy enough to handle an Alberta winter, so be sure to check before planting. Red Spirea and Bridal-wreath Spirea are two varieties that are tough enough for the winter. 

Be sure to give your plant enough space to grow if you don’t intend to prune it down, as it can reach up to six feet in height. We recommend adding mulch around the base of the plant to retain moisture since that is what helps it grow gorgeous flowers!

-forsythia shrub


If you’re looking for colour in the early spring, forsythia is the best choice; it simply bursts with vibrant yellow flowers! Be sure to put this shrub in full sun and plant it in well-draining soil rich in organic matter. We recommend mulching around this plant to help retain moisture since forsythia is hardy and can tolerate periods of decreased watering, but it will grow best if it has regular water. You’ll want to fertilize every couple of months through the spring and summer and prune after they’ve finished blooming. Annual pruning is essential to prevent overgrowth and keep your shrub looking gorgeous.

annabelle hydrangea


We are lucky to have hydrangea varieties that can withstand our cold season! Limelight and Annabelle hydrangeas are two varieties that are hardy in our region, and they look stunning in the garden. Annabelle hydrangeas have gorgeous, pure white flowers, while Limelight has enormous, soft green flowers that will age to pink or burgundy and last into the frost. They are a great statement shrub to add texture and bold colour to your landscape, plus they’re drought tolerant.  

More Hardy Flowering Shrubs

  • Azaela ‘Northern Lights’ Series
  • Chokecherry
  • Ninebark
  • Viburnum
  • Flowering Almond
  • Rosa Woodsii, Rosa Rugosa, or Canadian Artist rose series
  • Honeysuckle

Hardy Flowering Trees

crabapple tree

Crabapple Trees

If you’re looking for swoon-worthy flowering trees, crabapple trees are an excellent choice. They have fragrant, white flowers that bloom in late spring; they are densely packed on the branches, creating a stunning feature in your landscape. Crabapples prefer some personal space from other trees and foundations and grow best in slightly acidic, well-draining, rich soil. This tree is hardy in our region, so it will only need watering during particularly dry periods once it has settled in. We highly recommend pruning and regular inspections for pests and diseases for crabapple trees.  

Weeping Caragana

For something unique in the garden, consider this beautiful weeping tree. It is exceptionally hardy for our cold winters and will have yellow, pea-like flowers cascading against bright green foliage by mid-spring. It’s delicate, elegant, and beautiful in the landscape and is a great option for an ornamental accent tree. They grow to about 6 feet tall and live for 30 years. Ensure that you plant this tree in well-draining soil with full sun for the best results. 

Japanese Tree Lilac 

If you love lilacs, elevate your selection with the Japanese tree lilac! It is a larger lilac variety with creamy white blooms and the familiar fragrance many love. It blooms in the late spring and early summer and will attract pollinators to your garden. Ensure that your Japanese tree lilac has full sun and alkaline, well-draining soil for the best growth. They grow up to 30 feet tall with a 20-foot spread, so if you plant them outside your window, they leave plenty of room to mature. 

More Hardy Flowering Trees: 

  • Amur Cherry
  • Ohio Buckeye
  • Black Cherry
  • Muckle Plum
  • Lilac

If you’re looking to add some hardy flowering shrubs and trees to your landscape this year, feel free to contact us at Salisbury Landscaping or visit our garden centres in St. Albert and Sherwood Park!

Posted in Landscaping Tips

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