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Flowering Dogwood Tree
Home  > Tree Identification  > Flowering Dogwood Tree

Flowering Dogwood

Flowering Dogwood tree  Cornus florida

A small ornamental landscape tree, rarely reaching 30’ in height, the Flowering Dogwood is native to much of the eastern United States. Being an understory tree, the Flowering Dogwood will perform best if planted in a shady to moderately sunny location in the landscape.

Most of the “flower” on a Flowering Dogwood is actually four white bracts that surround the true yellowish-green flower clusters. The bracts start out green and gradually turn white as they enlarge in the spring. Cultivars with pink or rose colored bracts have also been developed.

The oval leaves of the Flowering Dogwood are 3 - 6” long and 1 ˝ - 3” wide. The margins of the leaves are smooth and the leaf veins curve toward the leaf tip. The leaves of the Flowering Dogwood turn a deep purplish-red in the fall and are accompanied by clusters of red berries.

Flowering Dogwood bark
Flowering Dogwood fruit
Flowering Dogwood leaf Flowering Dogwood tree

Flowering Dogwood characteristics:

Common insect pests of Flowering Dogwood: Borer, on stressed plants.

Common disease pests of Flowering Dogwood: Dogwood Anthracnose.

Fall foliage: Varies from purplish-red to brilliant scarlet red.

Form: Generally rounded, dense canopy, low branched.

Fruit: Clusters of bright red, oval fruit with a berry-like appearance.

Growth Rate: Moderate.

Leaves: 3 - 6 inches long, 1 ˝ - 3” long.

Mature height: Generally 10 - 20', occasionally reaching up to 40'.

Preferred soil pH: 4.8 - 7.7

Summer foliage: Green.

Tree Bark: Rough plates broken into a blocky pattern.

USDA Hardiness Zone: 4 - 9.


Common Flowering Dogwood varieties include:

‘Cherokee Chief’ which has pink flowers, but is not as winter hardy as other pink dogwoods.‘Cloud Nine’ is noted for the numerous large, white flowers they produce. One of the smaller and slower growing dogwoods, it is a good choice for planting where space is limited.

‘New Hampshire’ is a winter hardy selection. This dogwood selection will not tolerate hot southern summers.

‘Red Dogwood’ is a pink flowering dogwood variety. Flower color can vary depending on the soil it is planted in and the age of the flowers. Its crimson foliage in the fall has made this a most popular landscape tree.


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