Hello; I am looking to plant a native shrub and live in the city of Toronto. I would like one preferably that will turn red or yellow in the fall and have a mature height of no more than five or six feet.
I would like to ensure that the berries any shrub might produce will not be toxic to a dog. I was thinking of the Fragrant Sumac or Common Ninebark but am definitely open to other ideas. It will get mostly sun with some shade.
Could you please advise about some options?
Thank you for your question to the Toronto Master Gardeners.
Since you are wanting to help the environment by planting native shrubs, I have attached a helpful guide to the best plants for southern Ontario gardens. Sumac is on the list as recommended for naturalized large gardens as it can be difficult to control. There are so many beautiful choices in this flyer. Several, including dogwood, have brilliant fall colour.
Two other hardy perennial herbs considered safe around pets would be Rosemary and Lavender. Both grow in shrub form.
There are several websites devoted to living with and gardening with dogs. This site will help you determine which plants are safe. https://ontariospca.ca/blog/poisonous-plants-flowers/
Enjoy your dog-friendly gardening.