What are the best trees to plant in my Comox Valley garden?

With so many options picking the right tree for your garden can feel overwhelming!

Some important things to consider when picking a tree are:

  • How big will the tree get?

    • Do overhead or underground utilities get in the way of a tree growing to its full size
    • Take into account clearance for driveways, sidewalks
  • How much debris will the tree produce- falling leaves or fruit?

    • Some trees like magnolia although beautiful drop flowers, leaves and some varieties drop lots of small twigs
    • Living in the Comox Valley we need to be aware of wildlife and if you are planting a fruit tree you need to be on top of removing the fruit when they are ripe.
  • Are you planting a tree for shade, privacy or as a windbreak?

    • Deciduous trees provide shade in the summer and then lose their leaves in the fall to allow light and winter sun.
    • Leylandii provides a great privacy barrier but you do need to consider that they are a tasty treat for our Comox Valley tree deer. Alternative tree varieties such as Juniper or Holly might be a better option.

The Comox Valley benefits from warm dry summers, mild winters and the fertile soil which gives a lot of options for tree varieties. We find that this website is a good resource for finding suitable trees www.gardenia.net but here is a list of our favorites trees:


The native arbutus tree will do well in full sun and is a great tree for sites that suffer from erosion. The Arbutus tree can grow up to 20ft high. It has flowers and fruit which attract hummingbirds, butterflies and bees. There are a couple of dwarf varieties available such as the Elfin King (5ft), Oktoberfest (6-8ft) and the Compacta (10ft).

Arbutus Comox Valley
Dog Wood Comox Valley

Dog Wood:

The dogwood is native to BC and is an ideal tree for those who enjoy flowers (blooms from mid-March through to May). The dogwood will grow between 10-25ft tall and prefers partial shade but can tolerate full sun. These trees grow quickly and will reach full height in approx. 10 years.


Native to Japan, Korea and Chine the Acer species offer a wide variety of colourful foliage options. You can choose from dwarf varieties that grow to around 4-15ft and larger varieties that group up to 10-25ft. The Acer Griseum (Paperbark Maple) is one of our favourite varieties. With its beautiful peeling bark and brilliant red and orange leaves in the fall.

Paperbark Maple Comox Valley
Katsura Tree Comox Valley

Cercidiphyllum japonicum (Katsura tree)

Native to Japan and China the Katsura tree has a beautiful shape and heart-shaped leaves. Providing colour variety through the seasons with reddish-purple leaves in spring, green in summer and gold and red in fall.  The Katsura grows up to 40-50ft tall and is a good tree for shade.

Cercis Canadensis ‘Forest Pansy’

The Forest Pansy has beautiful pinkish/ purple flowers in spring. The flowers are followed by purple heart-shaped leaves that turn shades of orange and red in the fall. A great ornamental tree which grows 20-30ft tall.

Cercis Canadensis ‘Forest Pansy’ Comox Valley
Persian Silk Tree Comox Valley

Albizia Julibrissin (Persian Silk Tree)

The Persian Silk Tree has beautiful feathery pink aromatic flowers making it a great ornamental tree choice. This tree is fast-growing and will reach around 30-40ft high.

When planting a new tree in your garden it is always important to remember that formative tree trimming is essential to keep your tree happy and healthy for years to come. If you would like advice about what tree is right for your garden or you have already planted a tree and need some tree pruning please contact us https://www.tree-craft.ca/comox-valley-tree-services-pruning-stump-removal/contact/