Cornus or Dogwood Plants
One of a number of species commonly known as dogwoods, Cornus florida is a native of North America and is a deciduous flowering small tree. The two main varieties are the white flowering ‘alba’ and the red to pink flowering ‘rubra’.
Both are spreading deciduous trees and are an excellent ornamental tree for the garden. Reaching around 5m in height with a similar spread they require little pruning and will naturally form a nice shape if given enough space and light. The problem with this species is that it is disease prone, so not widely used in the garden.
Cornus kousa is the Chinese or Japanese dogwood, with C. kousa var.kousa being the Japanese form and C. kousa var.chinensis being the Chinese form. One of the most popular garden plants is a cultivar known as ‘Satomi’ .
We also have the European species Cornus mas, prized for the fruit which are used to make jellies and other preserves. Known as the Cornelian Cherry this is another deciduous species reaching around 5m. Flowers are yellow and attractive however they are not as spectacular as some, the fruit are prized.
The evergreen C. capitata is the Himalayan Dogwood, hardy and pretty yellow flowers in spring to summer, however is does have a tendency to self seed and can become a little weedy.
C. alternifolia is the Pagoda Dodwood, a wonderfull small tree with layered branches and pretty white flowers. Cornus alternifolia argenta is a variegated form, an excellent garden plant
C. contraversa is a large tree with tiered branches, this distinct layering of the branches is a desirable element in garden design a variegated form can be found, both are slow growing.
C. siberica is a twiggy multi stemmed shrub grown more for the colorful crimson red stems than its white flowers that appear in spring.
As a ground cover plant, the low growing Cornus canadensis has its uses, a creeping deciduous plant with attractive green foliage and small white flowers in spring, a sometimes difficult plant and not widely used.
Cornus are a generally slow growing tree or shrub. Flower come in clusters white to pink or yellow, followed by a fruit.
And then we have the cultivars.
Cornus species and cultivars include: Cornus alba, alba stricta, alternifolia argentea, alba elegantissima, capitata, florida, kousa, capitata (evergreen dogwood), officinalis, florida rubra, canadensis, mas. Cornus ‘Eddies White Wonder’ has large white flower and interesting down swept branches.
Other Dogwood Trees
Cornus are available for sale from the following nurseries
'Justly famous for rare and unusual plants' Don Teese
34 Mt Pleasant Rd Monbulk VIC 3793
1070 Jacksons Track, Jindivick 3818
Specialising in growing and selling Rare and Unusual Trees, shrubs Perennials Bulbs and Climbers, a unique nursery with amazing stock.
412 James Lane, Fern Hill VIC. 3458 - Phone 0419002651
Large range of Rare plants, Climbers, Bulbs, Perennials Fruit Trees, Ornamental Trees and Shrubs. Available both Retail and by Mail Order