We’ve compiled a list of beautiful trees for Canberra gardens that give shade and colour as well as being frost and drought hardy. These trees are suited to growing in Canberra’s hot summers and cold winters and will give you shade during summer months and let the sun shine in during winter. Make sure wherever you plant a tree you give it enough space to realise its potential height and canopy so it won’t interfere with powerlines or physical structures. Always check to see how invasive roots are if you are planting close to any hard structures.
Many of these trees are available bare-rooted and can be planted during winter or early spring. It’s not advisable to plant them during the hot summer weather.
Deciduous tree with delicate foliage and beautiful autumn colour from deep red to golden hues. Japanese maples are among the most beautiful trees. Plant in a shady spot out of the wind. There are around 3000 cultivars from small shrubs to small trees. Leaf shape varies from fern like to more traditional maple leaf.
Slow-moderately fast growing deciduous tree growing to around 8m tall although there are dwarf forms available. Leaves turn golden orange in autumn. Mass flowers in mid-late summer in pinks, lilac, red or white. Very showy flowers with fabulous coloured bark after shedding. Edible fruit in autumn that go brilliant colours from yellow to bright red. Drought resistant.
Hardy, deciduous tree with beautiful summer blossom, stunning autumn colours and edible fruit ranging in colour from yellow to bright red. Prefer protection from the wind but otherwise very hardy. Grow to around 6-8m Slow to moderate growth. Drought resistant once established.
The Japanese dogwood has stunning pink or white flowers. Grows well in Canberra but not common in surrounding regions. Deciduous small tree to around 8m. Crimson bronze foliage in autumn. Slowish growth.
Elegant tree to around 4 m. Grown for their lovely dappled shade and fresh colour of their foliage. Very easy to grow. Moderately fast. Drought hardy. Shademaster and Honey Locust are the two most popular varieties.
Stunning deciduous shade tree which is fast growing. Reaches 14m with a 12m canopy. Pretty flowers in spring followed by dense foliage and then brilliant autumn colours. Drought resistant.
Ornamental cherry tree
Stunning specimen decidious tree with beautiful spring flowers. Moderately fast growing. Often grown for its reddish bark. Available in white and pink shades with double flowers and weeping varieties. Weeping cherries reach about 3m high with double pink flowers turning white. The standard version reaches around 4m high. Ornamental charries are adaptable to most well-drained, moist soils and pH levels. Likes full-sun to part shade position.