Aster novae-angliae #2 (New England Aster)October 7, 2022
Thuja occidentalis ‘Techny’ #5 (American Arborvitae)October 11, 2022
Cornus florida #3 (Flowering Dogwood)
-Part Sun, Full Sun, Full Shade
-Moist to Average, Well-Drained Soil (FACU)
-Slightly Acidic pH
-15-30′ Tall by 15-30′ Wide
-Flat-topped Crown with Tiered growth habit
-White Blooms in April, May
-Black Walnut tolerant
-Medicinal Uses, Dye from Roots/Bark
Out of stock
Flowering Dogwood is a gorgeous native understory tree with a full four seasons of interest. It boasts beautiful 3″ wide, four-parted white bracts which look like large, long-lasting flowers. However, the actual flowers are the yellowish-green clusters in the center. They offer nectar and pollen to insect visitors, and mature into bright red fruits which are high in fat and calcium and are relished by many wild creatures. At least 93 species* of bird have been documented eating the shiny fruits, including migrating warblers, Cedar Waxwings, Northern Flickers and ravenous Robins. At least 98 species of Lepidoptera host on this tree, offering more food for insectivorous birds and nestlings.
In autumn, the foliage of Flowering Dogwoods becomes burgundy with a purple tinge. The glowing red fruits stand out against the darker background, and it is a sight to behold. When the leaves drop for winter, they can be used as a calcium-rich mulch around the tree or in garden beds. The horizontally tiered growth habit and gray, alligator-like bark can be admired throughout winter. This tree pairs very well with Eastern Redbud, which overlaps in bloom time and prefers the same moist, partial shade conditions in the understory. It is an excellent specimen tree and can be used to reach gracefully out towards a patio or residence, or to be massed or naturalized in woodlands.
Unfortunately, there is a disease called dogwood blight, caused by anthracnose fungus that has been attacking Flowering Dogwoods in the northern part of their native range. It mainly attacks trees that are already stressed, especially drought-stricken trees. It is very important to make sure they have an adequate supply of consistent moisture (but not waterlogged) in the summer months, to keep the root zone mulched so it can remain cool and moist, and to plant the trees where they will receive enough sunlight to keep the leaves dry and inhospitable for fungal development.
Native Trees, Shrubs, & Vines by William Cullina
Manual of Woody Landscape Plants by Michael A. Dirr
*Midwestern Native Shrubs and Trees by Charlotte Adelman & Bernard L. Schwartz
Missouri Botanical Garden
Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center
The Morton Arboretum-Black Walnut Tolerance
Mature Individual: Famartin, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons
Flower Detail: Plant Image Library from Boston, USA, CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons