Dwarf flowering crab trees have risen in popularity in recent years due to a desire for more compact ornamental trees to fit smaller yards. My favorite dwarf crab is the Firebird Crab, because of its well behaved branching, prolific flowering, exceptional disease resistance, and the great fall and winter appeal of the small pea sized red fruit that adds color to a drab time of year.
Firebird Crab is what I think of as a true dwarf and is usually grafted onto the stem of a Dolgo Crab at a height of 32″ to 48″ above ground level to create a “lollipop on a stick” appearance. Firebird Crab is a variant of Sargeant Crab, from which it draws its hardiness, dwarf genetics and the very best disease resistance. Leaves stay clean in appearance and remain on the tree from spring all the way through late fall on the Firebird Crab, making it a delight to the eye in all seasons.
Each spring pink flower buds cover the entire crown of this tree, eventually opening to a lovely creamy white in such numbers that it looks almost like a puffy white cloud.
Plant the Firebird Crab in properly drained soil where there is plenty of sunshine to get the best results. You can plant Firebird Crab under overhead power lines and there is little change it will grow into the lines as well as using it as the focal point of a landscape bed.
The size rating on this tree is 8 feet tall by 12 feet wide. due to its small stature, pruning is quite easy. If you find a place in your landscape for the Firebird Crab, I’m certain you will enjoy it for many years.