Flowering dogwoods (Cornus nutallii, Cornus florida and Cornus kousa) are outstandingly beautiful, fully hardy woody shrubs, or, given perhaps a decade or more, small trees.
Much admired for their masses of white or pink flowers (strictly speaking, the large bracts that surround the mass of tiny flowers), flowering dogwoods also put on a great show of autumn foliage colours in pink, reds and and yellows as well as the large red fruits which loosely resemble a cross between a lychee and a strawberry. Whilst being entirely safe to eat, they are only moderately tasty, with a flavour akin to somewhat dilute peaches, so they are probably best left for the birds to enjoy.
Plant in fertile soils that do not get very dry (mulch with well-rotted manure or garden compost if in doubt) in full sun or light shade, and water well during the first summer whilst the root system is getting established.
Other than one or two varieties marked as 'smaller' plants, all our flowering dogwoods are in 7 litre pots, or larger, and are between 1 and 1.5m high and at least two years old. Flowering dogwoods priced above £50 or more will be 3-4 years old, in 10, 15 or occasionally 20 litre pots and will be 2-3m in height. If you contact us we can give you exact pot sizes and plant height for each variety.
A cross between Cornus florida and Cornus nuttallii, with glossy, dark green leaves, turning a beautiful red- purple in autumn. Spectacular early summer flowers have large (7.5cm) white bracts. In time Ascona will take on a weeping habit. Fully hardy. H: 3-5m
A beautiful small tree or large shrub with spreading, tiered branches; white margined leaves, small white flowers and spherical blue-black (inedible) fruit. Best in dappled shade and moister soils. H: 2-3m
Raised in Japan, and noted for its very large leaves which turn fiery red in the autumn. The flowers also are larger than usual with prominent light pink bracts. Will make an outstanding specimen small tree. Fully hardy. Best in full sun or light shade in rich and slightly moister soils - mulch well!. H:2-5m
'Moonbeam' was selected for its extra large flower, up to 15cm in diameter. Leaves are dark green, contrasting markedly with the cream white flowers. Also noted for a more open and vigorous growth than other 'kousa' varieties. Best in deep, fertile and reliably moist soil, in full sun or light shade. Fully hardy. H: 2-6m
A spectacular deciduous shrub or small tree with attractive creamy-white margined mid green leaves up to 8cm long. This flowering dogwood forms a large shrub or small tree and produces flower heads surrounded by 4 tapered bracts to 5cm long, emerging pale green margined with cream before fading to cream all over. Fully hHardy but doesn't like exposed, windy situations. H:2- 5m. Best in cool, partial shade and rich, deep and fertile soils that remain reliably moist.
A more stocky than usual form, with large pure white flowers bracts in early summer. Good autumn colour as the leaves turn to yellow, red and orange. Best in full sun or light shade in richer and somewhat moister soils. Mulch well with well-rotted garden compost if in doubt. Fully hardy. H:2m
Deciduous tree or large shrub. Dark green oval leaves turning red in autumn. Excellent kousa cultivar with very large creamy-white flower bracts in early summer. Full sun or semi shade on soil rich in organic matter and not prone to getting very dry - mulch if necessary. Hardy. H:2-5m.
Pacific Dogwood. Conical deciduous tree with ovate mid green leaves - notably more upright than the parent species. In late spring a stunning display of green flowers with large oval white bracts is produced, followed by orange-red fruit, especially after a warm summer. Vivid red autumn foliage. Best results will come from planting in fertile humus-rich and reliably moist soil in full sun or light shade. H: 6-8m
'Ruth Ellen' produces numerous large-bracted flowers from a young age, the bracts being pure white, the true flowers being insignificant and yellowish-green. Ruth Ellen is also sterile so will not produce fruit, but on the other hand will put a lovely display of autumn colours, as the leaves turn to rich tones of purple and red.
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