Cornus Species, Eastern Dogwood, Flowering Dogwood

Cornus florida

Family: Cornaceae
Genus: Cornus (KOR-nus) (Info)
Species: florida (FLOR-id-uh) (Info)
View this plant in a garden



Water Requirements:

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Sun Exposure:

Sun to Partial Shade



Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us


15-20 ft. (4.7-6 m)


15-20 ft. (4.7-6 m)


USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 C (-20 F)

USDA Zone 5b: to -26.1 C (-15 F)

USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)

USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)

USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)

USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)

USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)

USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us



Bloom Color:


White/Near White

Bloom Characteristics:

This plant is attractive to bees, butterflies and/or birds

Bloom Size:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Time:

Mid Spring

Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

5.6 to 6.0 (acidic)

6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

Patent Information:


Propagation Methods:

From softwood cuttings

From seed; germinate in a damp paper towel

By grafting

By budding

Seed Collecting:

Seed does not store well; sow as soon as possible


This plant is said to grow outdoors in the following regions:

Atmore, Alabama

Huntsville, Alabama

Tuscaloosa, Alabama

Tuskegee, Alabama

Kingman, Arizona

Conway, Arkansas

Malvern, Arkansas

Alameda, California

Sacramento, California

Wilmington, Delaware

Bartow, Florida

Dunnellon, Florida

Inverness, Florida

Keystone Heights, Florida

Mc Intosh, Florida

Niceville, Florida

Tallahassee, Florida

Trenton, Florida

Augusta, Georgia

Cordele, Georgia

Stone Mountain, Georgia

Villa Rica, Georgia

Hayden, Idaho

Twin Falls, Idaho

Benton, Kentucky

Ewing, Kentucky

Georgetown, Kentucky

Louisville, Kentucky

Murray, Kentucky

Coushatta, Louisiana

Plain Dealing, Louisiana

Brookeville, Maryland

Riverdale, Maryland

Valley Lee, Maryland

Lawrence, Massachusetts

North Billerica, Massachusetts

Roslindale, Massachusetts

Wayland, Massachusetts

Constantine, Michigan

Kalamazoo, Michigan

Royal Oak, Michigan

Saucier, Mississippi

Cole Camp, Missouri

Fulton, Missouri

Kansas City, Missouri

Moberly, Missouri

Piedmont, Missouri

Springfield, Missouri

Sullivan, Missouri

Basking Ridge, New Jersey

Cranford, New Jersey

Frenchtown, New Jersey

Jamesburg, New Jersey

Whitehouse Station, New Jersey

Willingboro, New Jersey

Medina, New York

New Paltz, New York

Riverhead, New York

Belmont, North Carolina

Durham, North Carolina

Fayetteville, North Carolina

Henderson, North Carolina

Hickory, North Carolina

Lexington, North Carolina

Mooresville, North Carolina

New Bern, North Carolina

New London, North Carolina

Raleigh, North Carolina

Summerfield, North Carolina

Wilmington, North Carolina

Winston Salem, North Carolina(2 reports)

Akron, Ohio

Ashland, Ohio

Bucyrus, Ohio

Cleveland, Ohio

Columbus, Ohio(2 reports)

Findlay, Ohio

Fremont, Ohio

Glouster, Ohio

Guysville, Ohio

Salem, Oregon(2 reports)

Springfield, Oregon

Greensburg, Pennsylvania

Mc Keesport, Pennsylvania

Pottstown, Pennsylvania

Schwenksville, Pennsylvania

Tidioute, Pennsylvania

Tioga, Pennsylvania

West Chester, Pennsylvania

Wilkes Barre, Pennsylvania

Bluffton, South Carolina

Rock Hill, South Carolina(2 reports)

Benton, Tennessee

Elizabethton, Tennessee

Greenbrier, Tennessee

Knoxville, Tennessee

Lenoir City, Tennessee

Murfreesboro, Tennessee

Arlington, Texas

Broaddus, Texas

Conroe, Texas

Dike, Texas

Lufkin, Texas

Nacogdoches, Texas

New Caney, Texas

Arlington, Virginia

Basye, Virginia

Leesburg, Virginia

Oakton, Virginia

Bothell, Washington

Pullman, Washington

Spokane, Washington

Liberty, West Virginia

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On Feb 3, 2015, FlyPoison from Rock Hill, SC (Zone 7a) wrote:

A response to Charwhittens' earlier question regarding advice for the Eastern Dogwood: Dogwoods often take several years to establish well enough where they will consistently bloom. You don't need to plant more than one to get them to bloom since they are not dioecious. I would strongly recommend planting them where they get at least 4 hours of direct sunlight for best results. My best bloomers get 5-6 hours of sunlight. I've had very poor results with transplanted native Dogwoods in full sun as well as full shade. In the South the full sun is simply too much for them. In full shade they tend to not bloom well, if at all, and their fall color is not nearly as good. I've also lost several planted in full shade because they succumbed to anthracnose, a terrible fungus that weakens dog... read more


On Dec 29, 2014, Charwhitten from Apopka, FL wrote:

Grew up in Tallahassee and loved springtime, with the masses of flowering white dogwoods. Later I lived in Atlanta with yards full of white dogwoods resembling snowfall - beautiful. So, when I moved here to Central Florida with a small backyard shaded by huge oak trees, I planted a couple of dogwoods.

My concern is my first one planted 4 years ago has never bloomed. I added another last year, thinking maybe it needed a mate. Will see what happens, come Spring. But, does anyone out there have advice on how to encourage dogwoods to produce those masses of beautiful snowy blooms? I'd appreciate it...


On Mar 11, 2014, coriaceous from ROSLINDALE, MA wrote:

This may well be my favorite ornamental tree.

I like it both for its spectacular flowering display---extra prominent because it happens when the tree's still leafless---and for its gracefully tiered branching architecture. Fall color is often a good purplish red.

To bloom and harden off their wood well, flowering dogwoods require the long hot summers they get where they're native. This is one tree that grows and blooms better in the eastern US than where milder summers prevail, as in the Pacific northwest, the Canadian maritimes, or the British Isles.

There are flowering dogwoods that are hardy to Z5 and bloom well there. But many of the trees in commerce today descend from southern populations that may not be flower-bud-hardy in the north.
... read more


On Jun 18, 2012, delbertyoung56m from Medina, NY wrote:

I bought a 1 year old seedling, at a yard sale, from a lady on Long Island, who grew many dogwoods from a tree in her yard, and then sold them at the yard sale for $3. Now mine is well over my head due to pruning, but has not bloomed yet - Maybe next year.


On Jun 21, 2011, onyx3d from Toronto,
Canada wrote:

*****UPDATE to post April 20th, 2012*****
****Just to give an update to my original post below, my tree has gone from 3 blooms last year (after which I used the below method through the summer and winter non-stop) and this year the tree has 40-50 blooms approx., and more may pop out yet as it's still april and they haven't even begun to open yet. So I think it's safe to say that things are working well. I will update the final count after all have bloomed******

****Original post below*****

For people having trouble with the plant read below, and your issues will likely vanish.

I planted a dogwood sapling in Toronto, Ontario Canada last year (it had one bloom at the nursery, I wanted the least established plant to give the tree a better... read more


On May 8, 2011, danieldogwood from Coxsackie, NY wrote:

I'm in the Hudson Valley and planted a flowering dogwood about 4 -5 years ago. But, it has never flowered. I planted it at the edge of a wooded area with a tree canopy that provides dappled shade. Has anyone had similar experiences? Is there anything I can do? I love dogwoods and would love to see the tree flower each year. Seeking advice.


On Jun 23, 2010, gsiwicki from Whitehouse Station, NJ wrote:

Sadly, we lost our beautiful white dogwood this year after the rough winter we had in New Jersey-3 snow storms with almost a foot each time. We've lived in our house for 11 years and I believe this dogwood had been there for years before that. I loved watching it bloom each Spring from several of our windows. This wasn't the only we lost this year-each one breaks my heart! I'd definitely get another one!!!!!


On May 26, 2010, susierosey from Millstone, NJ wrote:

We have several Dogwoods on our property - natives and Rutgers hybrids and, as others have noted, blooms on all were sparse this year which I must assume was weather related. Usually they are a beautiful welcome to spring.


On May 24, 2010, hwylo from Wilmington, NC wrote:

Some mention should be made of the blight that is currently decimating large populations of this species.

(see )

The anthracnose fungus has taken a number of trees on my property, and I have noticed a decrease of the tree in the wild.


On May 24, 2010, Gardennot from Willingboro, NJ wrote:

Our dogwoods did not bloom nearly as much as the previous years. We had a three large snowfalls (each over a foot of snow) was that the reason why the blooms were so sparse this year. Too wet?


On May 24, 2010, Canopy from Tallahassee, FL wrote:

We have grown both white and pink dogwoods here in Tallahassee, Florida, Zone 8b, for the past 25 years. White dogwoods are indigenous to the area and will self-seed. When we planted the pink dogwoods we were told we were too far South for the pinks to bloom reliably, but they have done so every year. The nursery we originally bought them from said that these pink varieties had come from Pensacola, which is about 200 miles west. We would like to plant more pink dogwoods but they are not now available for sale in this area. Anyone know of a vendor in the area?


On May 24, 2010, dormousehouse from villennes sur seine (paris),
France wrote:

I LIVE NR PARIS FRANCE AND SPENT FORTUNE ON A YOUNG TREE ABOUT 2 1/2 FT TALL; IT IS NEITHER DEAD NOR ALIVE! IT SEEMED LAST YR (its 1st full yr here) to slowly deteriorate; it lost most leaves and certainly has never bloomed. it is planted in an island in the lawn in full sun with other plantings beneath. shall i rip it out as it is in a prime location or is there another solution? thanks! [email protected]


On May 24, 2010, Cheryl8 from Monroe Township, NJ (Zone 7a) wrote:

My Dogwood has always flowered beautifully every year. This year however I had a total of three flowers on the tree. Was it the harsh winter we had or did the squirrels eat the buds? The comment below caught my eye, I see it was not just my tree that this happened to.


On Apr 16, 2010, sterlingray714 from Wilmington, DE wrote:

Do dogwood trees bllom every year? Ours has very few this year, and has bloomed plentifully in the past? Can anybody enlighten me?
We are in Wilmington, DE, which I think ought to be a good zone for this tree.


On Jul 3, 2008, Funkhouser from Belmont, NC wrote:

We have three of the white-flowering variety on our property, and they are everywhere around this area (a lot of mature hardwoods around to shade them). Ours flower proliferously, and leaves are very drought tolerant...but that could be due to the fact that they are so well-established here.


On Jul 18, 2006, escambiaguy from Atmore, AL (Zone 8b) wrote:

So many people make the mistake of planting this tree in full sun, where it always looks scorched. This is one that must have part shade to look it's best.


On Jan 31, 2006, Breezymeadow from Culpeper, VA (Zone 7a) wrote:

Flowering Dogwood is a native understory tree in Virginia, & in fact is the State flower.

My farm & the surrounding woodlands fairly explode with the white blossoms in springtime, & the contrast with the also-native Redbuds, which are still blooming around the same time, is spectacular.

As far as cultivated types, I picked up a Pink Flowering Dogwood this past spring during Home Depot's Mother's Day sale (for only $20!!!), & planted it over the grave of my beloved blue Doberman. A solid 5' tall & planted in our lovely red clay soil, with weekly watering when necessary, it did very well, & is covered with buds awaiting this coming spring. Depending on how this one ultimately performs, I may be picking up more come this Mother's Day for a few other select spo... read more


On Jan 30, 2006, raisedbedbob from Walkerton, VA (Zone 7a) wrote:

This tree ia a marvelous companion for Azaleas.


On Jan 29, 2005, Todd_Boland from St. John's, NL (Zone 5b) wrote:

This is no doubt a beautiful flowering tree, however a note should be made in regards to its reported hardiness. The species is listed as hardy to USDA zone 5. And indeed, it can tolerate the minimum winter temp. of a zone 5. It does, however, require a fairly long warm summer season to ripen the wood properly before winter sets in. For gardeners in a coastal, summer-cool zone 5 (for example Newfoundland, Nova Scotia) this dogwood does very poorly, suffering from severe die-back in winter. For such gardeners, it is better to grow Cornus kousa which is more adapted to cooler summer temps.


On Nov 13, 2004, TREEHUGR from Now in Orlando, FL (Zone 9b) wrote:

New comment coming soon


On Apr 20, 2004, waltandmary wrote:

Ours has been grown for ten or more years and has had great results. This year, the blooms are down to thirty or so; about 1/4 of what has been the routine of the past. Here in Maryland we had a normal Winter season. Other then a lack of blooms this year, the tree is beautiful and a nice border plant to the end corner of the house.


On Apr 16, 2004, melody from Benton, KY (Zone 7a) wrote:

A beautiful understory tree that lines the edges of our forests here in the South. Their blooms add interest to the pale greens of spring and are quite welcome after a long winter.

They are found in the wild in our area and the hillsides are quite beautiful when a small grove is happened upon.


On Jan 18, 2004, MotherNature4 from Bartow, FL (Zone 9a) wrote:

I live at the southernmost range in central Florida. Only the white variety of Cornus florida will bloom this far south. If we have no frost, flowering will be poor, but it is worth growing.


On Jul 12, 2003, Toxicodendron from Piedmont, MO (Zone 6a) wrote:

Just wanted to mention that if you have a big old dead dogwood, it makes fantastic firewood. That is some consolation, at least.


On Aug 30, 2002, Terry from Murfreesboro, TN (Zone 7a) wrote:

We have several mature dogwoods lining our driveway. They provide wonderful flowers each spring, nice shade all summer, beautiful foliage and berries in the fall (although the berries don't last long - each year, a flock of birds descend on the trees and strip the berries in a matter of minutes!)


On Aug 31, 2001, smiln32 from Oklahoma City, OK (Zone 7a) wrote:

Grow in average, medium wet, well-drained soil in sun to part shade. Prefers organically rich, acidic soils in part shade. Benefits from a 4-6" mulch which will help keep roots cool and moist in summer.


On Aug 15, 2001, mystic from Ewing, KY (Zone 6a) wrote:

This is a small tree, up to 30 feet in height and 35 feet across, but the typical size is more like 15' tall and 15-20' across. It has a short trunk and a full, rounded crown with horizontal branches often in layered tiers, spreading wider than its height.

The bark on mature trees is broken up into small square blocks. Flowering dogwood has opposite, deciduous midgreen leaves, 3-6" long, which turn red and purple in autumn. Flowering dogwood blooms in the spring, as its new leaves are unfolding, and usually remains showy for 2-3 weeks. The bloom consists of four showy petal-like bracts, usually snow white or pink, surrounding a cluster of tiny yellowish flowers. The bracts are 1-2" long and obovate in shape, usually with a cleft at the tip.

Clusters of bri... read more