We live in Salem and our dogwood did not thrive in full sun. I am considering a styrax japonica but am not sure if it would thrive in all day sun given our ever increasing hot summers. As an elderly lady, I cannot continue experimenting. Would you recommend this tree or have any other suggestions for a fairly small tree with a similar branching and open shape?. Thank you, Sylvia Strand
Thanks for contacting Ask an Expert. I believe the Styrax japonica (Japanese Snowbell) would be a good choice for your spot. Oregon State University recommends that it gets sun to part shade and is best in acid soil supplemented with organic matter. It is also quite disease- and pest-free.
Others you might consider are the Eastern Redbud (Forest Pansy Redbud), which adapts to many soils and has great color throughout the seasons, or a tree-form Crape Myrtle (Lagerstroemia). Crape myrtles are dramatic for their summer bloom and colorful bark, but choose a variety that is resistant to powdery mildew.
For more guidance, check out the Oregon State University publication, “Selecting, Planting, and Caring for a New Tree”. It is available to read online or for downloading into your tablet.
Enjoy your new tree.