12 Common Flowering Trees For Kentucky Gardens

Do you want to boost your home’s curb appeal with flowering trees in Kentucky? Well, we have got some excellent news for you; Kentucky is home to some of the most gorgeous and diverse blossoming trees in the entire US. Read on to find out about 12 breathtaking flowering trees in Kentucky! 

Divided into six striking geographical regions – the Cumberland Plateau in the east, the Western Coal Fields, the far-west Jackson Purchase, the north-central Bluegrass Region, and the south-central and western Pennyroyal Plateau – Kentucky is blessed with a versatile landscape. It is home to various arresting forests, narrow valleys, high ridges, mountains, coal fields, and more. 

Due to its central US location, The Bluegrass State also enjoys plenty of sunshine and four beautifully distinct seasons, including humid, warm summers and moderately cold winters. Overall, the state enjoys a humid subtropical climate, which enables its citizens to grow a wide variety of trees in their homes. The most popular trees grown widely in Kentucky include Black Oak, Sourwood, American Holly, Red Maple, Pine, American Beech, and Green Ash.

You can also grow some attractive, low-maintenance flowering trees in your Kentucky garden, including the prolific Serviceberry, the incomparable Magnolia, the eye-catching Eastern Redbud, and the ever-popular Tulip Poplar. Whether you plant them as part of a mixed shrub garden, standalone yard specimen, or as ornamental accent pieces, these trees will surely beautify your garden to no end. 

So, without further ado, let’s take a look at 12 exquisite flowering trees in Kentucky that you can plant in your garden:

1. Serviceberry 

  • Amelanchier arborea
  • Flowering in: Spring
  • Height: 10-25 ft
Downy Serviceberry
Dan Mullen Downy Serviceberry

Native to the northeastern United States, Serviceberry can be grown as a shrub or a small-sized tree. It features deciduous, oval green foliage that turns bright hues of red, yellow, and orange in fall. Serviceberry Trees produce prolific flopping clusters of slightly scented, 5-petaled, white blooms that give way to minute, round, delightful dark purple berries. This tree grows well in sunny or speckled locations and well-drained, moist, acidic soils. 

2. Crabapple

  • Malus sylvestris
  • Flowering in: Spring
  • Height: 40 ft
Malus sylvestris
Hans Hillewaert Malus sylvestris

Crabapple Trees are native to the temperate areas of Europe, Asia, and North America. These versatile trees produce striking pink and white blooms that give way to clusters of fleshy red, yellow, and green apples with a tart flavor. They feature deciduous, pointy-tipped, oval green leaves that turn reddish-purple or yellowish-orange in fall. This tree thrives in sunny locations or minimal shade and well-drained, moist soils. 

3. Dogwood

  • Cornus florida
  • Flowering in: Spring
  • Height: 25 ft
Cornus florida.
H. Zell Cornus florida.

Dogwood is a northern Mexico and eastern North American native. It’s a small to medium-sized, low-branching tree with a flat top and pyramidal to rounded crown. It has deciduous, oval green foliage that turns purplish-red in fall. Dogwoods yield compact, miniature, white flowers that bloom from pink bracts. This tree tends to thrive in speckled shade and well-drained, organic soils. 

4. Eastern Redbud

  • Cercis canadensis
  • Flowering in: Spring
  • Height: 30 ft
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JumpStory Eastern Redbud

Eastern Redbuds are native to various parts of Mexico and the US. They are beautiful, multi-trunked trees with parallel branches and a rounded crown. A redbud features deciduous, heart-shaped, dark green foliage that turns bold canary yellow in fall. It produces stunning clusters of tiny magenta buds that grow into long-lasting, pinkish-rose blooms. This low-maintenance tree thrives in most soils and various levels of sun exposure. 

5. Northern Catalpa Tree

  • Catalpa speciosa
  • Flowering in: Spring and Early Summer
  • Height: 40-60 ft
35044172 northern catalpa flowers 1
Yay Northern catalpa flowers

Northern Catalpa Tree is an award-winning American native with a twisting trunk, narrow, slightly oval crown, and arching branches. It features giant, deciduous, heart-shaped, glossy, light green leaves with hairy bases. This tree produces arresting clusters of slightly fragrant, trumpet-shaped, white blooms with yellow stripes and purple speckles. It grows well in sunny and lightly shaded locations and well-drained, organically rich, moist, acidic loams and clay soils. 

6. Magnolia Tree

  • Magnolia grandiflora
  • Flowering in: Spring
  • Height: 30-40 ft
Magnolia grandiflora.
KENPEI Magnolia grandiflora.

The Magnolia Tree is native to various parts of the US. It’s a medium-sized, dense tree with evergreen, leathery, dark green leaves with rusty brown bases. Magnolias produce large, scented, breathtaking, cup-shaped flowers that blossom at the tips of their robust stems. This tree thrives in sunny or partially shaded locations and well-drained, organically rich, moderately watered soils. 

7. Tulip Poplar

  • Liriodendron tulipifera
  • Flowering in: Late Spring and Early Summer
  • Height: 70-90 ft
Liriodendron tulipifera
Crusier Liriodendron tulipifera

Also known as Yellow Poplar and Tulip Tree, the Tulip Poplar is an Eastern North American native. It’s a tall and splendid tree with an arching dome-shaped or pyramidal crown. Tulip Poplars have large, deciduous, shimmering, bright green foliage. They produce cup-shaped, orange, and yellowish-green flowers that give way to cone-shaped fruits. This tree grows well in sunny locations and well-drained, moist, organically rich soils. 

8. Fringe Tree

  • Chionanthus virginicus
  • Flowering in: Late Spring and Early Summer
  • Height: 20 ft
A white fringetree Chionanthus virginicus
Cephas A white fringetree (Chionanthus virginicus)

Fringe Tree is an eastern US native. It’s a small-sized tree with a spreading, rounded habitat and wide, deciduous, spear-like leaves that turn yellow in fall. Fringe Trees produce flopping clusters of creamy white, fringe-like blooms that give way into bluish-black, olive-like fruits. This tree thrives in sunny or partly shaded locations and well-drained, fertile, moist soils. 

9. Kentucky Yellowwood

  • Cladrastis kentukea
  • Flowering in: Spring
  • Height: 33-49 ft
Yellowwood. Cladrastis kentukea
karen_hine Yellowwood. (Cladrastis kentukea)

An American native, Kentucky Yellowwood is a gorgeous tree with upward-spreading branches and a wide, rounded crown. Yellowwoods feature deciduous, pinnate, yellow-green leaves that turn vivid yellow in fall. This tree produces large, pendulous clusters of intensely aromatic white flowers that grow in tumbling canopies. It grows well in sunny locations and well-drained, fertile soils. 

10. Kentucky Coffeetree

  • Gymnocladus dioicus
  • Flowering in: Late Spring to Early Summer
  • Height: 60-75 ft
Kentucky Coffee Tree Gymnocladus dioicus.
Leonora (Ellie) Enking Kentucky Coffee Tree (Gymnocladus dioicus).

The Kentucky Coffeetree is a Northeastern and central US native. It’s a tall, upright tree with wide-angled branches adorned with spike-like clusters of 1-inch long, greenish-white blossoms. Kentucky Coffeetrees have compound, bluish-green foliage that turns yellow in the fall. This drought-tolerant, low maintenance tree thrives in sunny locations and well-drained, deep, moist clay and sandy soils. 

11. Common Witch Hazel

  • Hamamelis virginiana
  • Flowering in: Fall
  • Height: 20-30 ft
Witch hazel Hamamelis virginiana
Nicholas A. Tonelli Witch-hazel (Hamamelis virginiana)

Native to Eastern North America, Common Witch Hazel is a medium-sized tree with a spreading habitat adorned with deciduous, oval to obovate, medium to dark green leaves with wavy margins. It produces stem-hugging clusters of crinkly bright yellow flowers with ribbon-shaped petals. The blooms give way to greenish seed capsules. This tree grows well in sunny and partially shaded locations and well-drained, adequately moist, organically rich, acidic soils.

12. Japanese Lilac

  • Syringa reticulata ivory silk
  • Flowering in: Early Summer
  • Height: 15-25 ft
28562804 view of japanese tree lilac or syringa reticulata full of flowers in the springtime popular zaimov park district oborishte
Yay Japanese tree lilac (syringa reticulata) full of flowers in the springtime.

The Japanese Lilac is an award-winning, urban-tolerant, hardy, small to medium-sized tree with a round or oval crown. This low-maintenance, multi-trunked tree produces a profusion of massive, foot-long clusters of stunning, fragrant, tiny, creamy white flowers that grow in unison with dark green leaves. Japanese Lilac thrives in full sun and well-drained, adequately moist soils.