Best Small Trees for Bees

Britain’s bees are in decline, ahead of our WORLD BEE DAY celebrations across Capital Gardens Centres on Sunday 19th May, we’ve been gathering together plants and pest busting techniques to bring the bees buzzing back.


We know the struggle of gardening in London with limited space, so we’ve put together a list of small, spring flowering trees, you could grow in your garden, balcony or even a container on your doorstep; adding trees to your outdoor space can provide a larger proliferation of flowers, pollen, nectar and protection than just plants alone.


To control the size of your tree prune when necessary, plant in a container to restrict growth or try growing techniques such as espaliering fruit trees. If you have a VERY small space don’t fear! Choose young trees and keep them in container, you can always donate them in a few years when they are getting a bit big for their pots.


Spring Flowering Trees for Bees


The ornamental cherry provides spring flowers in shades from rich pinks, to pastels and luminous whites. The best for bees are the single, or semi-double forms; avoid double flowering varieties as the bees won’t be able to get at the nectar.

We like Prunus ‘Accolade’, P. ‘Kanzan’, P. ‘Amanogawa’ and P. ‘Ruby’.

Flowering period: April to May

Ultimate heightt and spread 4-8m x 4-8m


Apple’s supply the bees with rich food source before giving us our crunchy fruits to munch, brake and jar.


We like Malus ‘Evereste’ , M. ‘Pink Glow’, M. ‘Toringo’, M. ‘Aros’, and M. ‘Laura’.

Flowering period: May

Ultimate height and spread 7m x 7m

Cercis ‘Forest pansy’

The ‘Forest pansy’ or ‘red bud’ produces tight clusters of purple-pink flower before unfurling its broad, deep purple, enigmatic foliage. It has been proven that bees are drawn particularly to blues, purples and violets, so the cercis is sure to attract a buzz!


Flowering period: March to April

Ultimate height and spread 4-8m x 4-8m


The Mountain Ash or Rowan, is a fully hardy and low maintenance option; its ‘lace’ like foliage makes it an elegant feature in a small garden.


We like Sorbus ‘Chinese Lace’ and S. ‘Autumn Spire’.

Flowering period: May

Ultimate height and spread 6m x 5m


The most delicate of our trees for bees with its slim, milky white flowers; the ‘Juneberry’ bears dark purple, edible fruits in June.


We like Amelanchier ‘Ballerina’ , A. ‘Lamarckii’ and A. ‘Obelisk’.

Flowering period: March to April

Ultimate height and spread 6m x 10m

We’ll be around on Sunday 20th May to answer any questions on planting your bee friendly trees- and getting the larger ones home!



             World Bee Day at Capital Gardens, 19th May 2019 at  

   your local Garden Centre.

For more info and events click here.

See you there!

Share this post

Comment (1)

  • Francesca Reply

    What a wonderful blog post. I’m sure this list will be really useful for those who are really keen to help the bees through their gardening but don’t know how. Of course, each of these small trees also have the advantage of being lovely additions to a garden. The forest pansy is gorgeous!

    21/05/2018 at 7:34 pm

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *