Cornus florida: Difference between revisions

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== Ecology ==
 
== Ecology ==
It is very susceptible to dogwood [[anthracnose]], a [[disease]] caused by the fungus ''Discula destructiva''. This has killed many wild stocks of Flowering Dogwood; domestic [[landscape]] [[plant]]ings have often been affected to a lesser degree because better [[atmospheric circulation|air circulation]] and less [[humid]] conditions discourages the fungus, but losses still occur frequently. The Kousa Dogwood is resistant to this disease. Flowering Dogwood leaves serve as foodplants for the caterpillars of some [[Lepidoptera]], e.g. the [[Io moth]] (''Automeris io'').
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It is very susceptible to dogwood [[anthracnose]], a [[disease]] caused by the fungus ''Discula destructiva''. This has killed many wild stocks of Flowering Dogwood; domestic [[landscape]] [[plant]]ings have often been affected to a lesser degree because better [[atmospheric circulation|air circulation]] and less oh yess it is very sexy i love it...it is like mikey[[humid]] conditions discourages the fungus, but losses still occur frequently. The Kousa Dogwood is resistant to this disease. Flowering Dogwood leaves serve as foodplants for the caterpillars of some [[Lepidoptera]], e.g. the [[Io moth]] (''Automeris io'').
   
 
== Cultivation and uses ==
 
== Cultivation and uses ==

Revision as of 17:51, 6 May 2008

Cornus florida
Benthamidia florida berry.jpg
Flowering Dogwood in fall with fruit
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Cornales
Family: Cornaceae
Genus: Cornus
Subgenus: Benthamidia
Species: C. florida
Binomial name
Cornus florida
L.

Cornus florida (Flowering Dogwood, syn. Benthamidia florida (L.) Spach) is a species of dogwood native to eastern North America, from southern Maine west to southern Ontario and eastern Kansas, and south to northern Florida and eastern Texas and also in Illinois, with a disjunct population in eastern Mexico in Nuevo León and Veracruz.

A single flowerhead, showing the large white petal-like bracts and the tight cluster of small greenish-yellow flowers.

It is a small deciduous tree growing to 10 m high, with a trunk diameter of up to 30 cm. The leaves are opposite, simple acute oval, 6-13 cm long and 4-6 cm broad, with an apparently entire margin (actually very finely toothed, under a lens); they turn a rich red-brown in fall.

The flowers are individually small and inconspicuous, with four greenish-yellow petals 4 mm long. Around 20 flowers are produced in a dense, rounded, flowerhead 1-2 cm diameter, the flowerhead surrounded by four conspicuous large white or pink "petals" (actually bracts), each bract 3 cm long and 2.5 cm broad, rounded, and with a distinct notch at the apex. The flowers are bisexual.

While most of the wild trees have white bracts, some selected cultivars of this tree also have pink bracts, some even almost a true red. They typically flower in early April in the southern part of their range, to late April or early May in northern and high altitude areas. The similar Kousa Dogwood (Cornus kousa), native to Asia, flowers about a month later.

Close up of a flower cluster showing the four yellow petals on each flower.

The fruit is a cluster of three to eight 10-15 mm diameter drupes which ripen to a bright red in the fall; they are eaten by birds which distribute the seeds. The berries are edible, and are remarkably delicious, often being used to sweeten tea in Mexico.[citation needed]

There are two subspecies:

Ecology

It is very susceptible to dogwood anthracnose, a disease caused by the fungus Discula destructiva. This has killed many wild stocks of Flowering Dogwood; domestic landscape plantings have often been affected to a lesser degree because better air circulation and less oh yess it is very sexy i love it...it is like mikeyhumid conditions discourages the fungus, but losses still occur frequently. The Kousa Dogwood is resistant to this disease. Flowering Dogwood leaves serve as foodplants for the caterpillars of some Lepidoptera, e.g. the Io moth (Automeris io).

Cultivation and uses

The bark on the tree's trunk

Flowering Dogwood does best horticulturally when it has shade from the west but has good morning sun. It does not do well when exposed to intense heat sources such as adjacent parking lots or air conditioning compressors. It has a low tolerance to salt. In eastern North America, it is cultivated as far north as Toronto and south to central Florida. Farther west, places of cultivation include Boulder, Sacramento and Vancouver. It is sold in other temperate parts of the world, including Sydney, Australia.

Selected cultivars
  • 'Autumn Gold' - white bracts; yellow fall color.
  • 'Barton' - large white bracts; blooms at early age; resists mildew.
  • 'Bay Beauty' - double white bracts; resists heat and drought; good for Deep South.
  • 'Cherokee Daybreak' - white bract; vigorous grower with variegated leaves.
  • 'Cherokee Chief' - red bracts; red new growth.
  • 'Cherokee Brave' - Even redder than 'Cherokee Chief', smaller bracts but dark red color.
  • 'Cherokee Princess' - vigorous white bracts, industry standard for white flowers.
  • 'Cherokee Sunset' - purplish-red bracts; variegated foliage.
  • 'Gulf Coast Pink' - best pink flowering dogwood in Florida.
  • 'Hohman's Gold' - white bracts; variegated foliage.
  • 'Plena' - double white bracts; anthracnose-resistant.
  • 'Purple Glory' - red bracts; purple foliage; anthracnose-resistant.
  • 'Weaver White' - large white blooms; large leaves; candelabra shape; good in north-central Florida.

Other old names now rarely used include American Dogwood, Florida Dogwood, Indian Arrowwood, Cornelian Tree, White Cornel, False Box, and False Boxwood. This species has in the past been used in the production of inks, scarlet dyes, and as a quinine substitute; other products needing a hard dense wood have been made from the wood, including Golf club heads, tool handles and other products.[1]

References and external links

References

  1. ^ Petrides, George A. 1972. A field guide to trees and shrubs; field marks of all trees, shrubs, and woody vines that grow wild in the northeastern and north-central United States and in southeastern and south-central Canada. The Peterson field guide series, 11. Boston: Houghton Mifflin. page 106.