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How to Choose the Right Flowers and Plants for Your Calgary Landscaping Needs

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Do you want to add vibrancy to your Calgary landscaping? Start making the exterior of your home stand out. After all, first impressions start with a beautiful yard.


The weather is unpredictable so it can be hard to choose which plants and trees will survive the seasons. Experts at Sungreen Landscaping will take the guessing out of your decision. Add life to your yard with beautiful trees, shrubs and flowers strong enough to withstand the fluctuating temperatures in Calgary.

Water Wise Plants

Water-wise plants can live through cold temperatures, drying winds and some snow cover. This classification of plant is ideal for Calgary weather since we have such a tough climate with short seasons. Annual plants requiring minimal watering come in a variety of options. Water-wise perennials need additional water during the first 2 years but eventually, rainfall will be substantial enough to sustain growth.

What are some water-wise annuals that you can use for your Calgary landscaping needs?

Sunflowers: The sunflower has a large flowering head and can grow up to 12 feet tall with the head reaching over 12 inches in diameter. The scientific name for this flower is Helianthus, Helia means sun and Anthus meaning flower. They are a wonderful choice for planting in your yard since they attract birds who also feast on pesky bugs hanging around.

African Daisies: African daisies grow well in dry rock gardens for early season blossoming and can even grow indoors in cool sunrooms or greenhouses. Flowers produced are perfect for cutting with stems growing between 18 inches to 2 feet high. They come in a variety of colours to add that extra little something to your yard.

Cleomes: Cleomes are also known as spider flowers because of the spidery seedpods it produces. This flower ranges in height from 1 ½ to 3 feet tall with a spread of 1-2 feet. Cleomes are disliked by deer and rabbits so will not be eaten, leaving you with an empty yard. Beautiful hummingbird moths visit this flower at dusk. Plant Cleomes alongside other annuals such as sunflowers to create a yard with flowers that complement each other.

Marigolds: Marigolds are a sun-loving plant excellent for flowerbeds. This flower comes in bright yellows and oranges, attracting bees and butterflies to your yard while deterring insects. They make wonderful protective borders to your garden and are available in a variety of heights from 6 inches to 12 inches. Marigolds transplant well and can survive Calgary’s unstable growing season.

What are some choices of water-wise perennials for Calgary landscaping?

Bearded Irises: Bearded irises come in every colour except fire-engine red. These resilient plants live happily in temperatures below 0 Degrees Celsius and have few natural diseases or insect enemies. Branched flower stocks range from 8 inches to 48 inches. They have a beautiful drop look with falls and easily re-grow after the winter.

Blanket Flowers: Blanket flowers love the heat and attract butterflies. An excellent food source for pollinators, small birds can be seen picking off the seeds of the spent blooms. They are easy to grow and rise to a height of 18 to 22 inches tall. Also known as gaillardia, these flowers are renowned for long-lasting mounds of colour with single or double daisy-like flowers and grey-green foliage.

Cranesbills: Cranesbills are great at camouflaging low-lying eyesores because they grow to 12 to 20 inches in height with an 18 to 24-inch spread. The name of this plant refers to the shape of the fruit capsule where its seeds mature before spreading. They tend to be free of disease and thrive in remote, wild areas. Cranesbills have flowers made up of five petals available in purple, blue, white and pink blossoms.

Globe Thistles: Globe thistles grow 3 feet tall and spread to 24 inches. This flower can live up to 10 years, making it an extremely long-lasting show off plant. The upright stance has somewhat of a coarse texture. Bold steel blue pincushion flowers on this plant stand out from the rest of the perennials.


If you are looking to add a spark of greenery to your Calgary landscaping, try using the following water-wise trees and shrubs.


Bur Oaks: Bur oaks are majestic trees rising 15 to 30 metres tall producing acorns. They are usually a tall tree with a straight trunk but depending on where it grows can be smaller with gnarled branches and a twisty trunk. This tree carries much strength and has the ability to survive forest fires because of its thick bark. It is estimated to have a 350 to 400-year lifespan.

Colorado Blue Spruces: Gray-blue needles grow in a pyramidal form up to 60 feet in height on this evergreen. Wildlife seeks refuge in spruce trees to hide from frigid winter temperatures. Birds, in particular, use these trees for nesting and roosting.


Mugo Pines: This shrub has 1-2 inch needles and can grow up to 20 feet tall. Its green foliage stays year-round making it a great coverage spot for animals. Mugo Pines are highly tolerant of pollution so they can thrive in inner-city environments.

Saskatoons: The Saskatoon shrub grows edible blue to purple fruit and extends 6 to 30 feet tall. You can harvest its fruit to create versatile recipes. The bark can also be used to create a drink for aiding minor stomach problems.


A full list of native plants to our prairie region in and around Calgary is available from Sungreen Landscaping. Ask one of our friendly landscape specialists how to incorporate local plants into your Calgary landscaping design. Make your pretty land reflect the origins of your homeland.

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  • Chestermere
  • Airdrie
  • De Winton
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  • Okotoks
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  • Strathmore
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