The Flowering Dogwood Tree of the Southeastern United States

One of the most beautiful trees growing throughout the Southeastern United States is the Flowering Dogwood tree. The Flowering Dogwood is also known as the Cornus Florida.

In the State of North Carolina, dogwoods are plentiful especially in the piedmont area, the center most part of the state. The Flowering Dogwood grows naturally along the highways and wooded areas of North Carolina's lush green country sides. When the dogwood is in heavy bloom in April, the borders of the woodlands seem trimmed with beautiful white flowers.

The dogwood is a readily recognizable small tree with a relatively small base which grows to approximately 20 feet or more. The limbs spread, but can be easily trimmed back and shaped as the tree grows and forms. Many people prefer dogwoods for their manageability and beautiful blooms.

The flowers on the dogwood can be either white, pink or red with four small petals per flower. On the tip or outer end of the petals is a dark spot with reddish coloring. In the center of the petals is a crown like formation. For this reason, many people identify the dogwood flower with the crucifixion of the Christ. The foliage or leaves on the dogwood are deciduous broadleaf meaning that the leaves are broad and shed annually.

Dogwoods grow well in zones 5 to 8 and need partial shade. Many people plant the dogwood as a stand alone tree, but place it on the Northeast side of the home rather than on the south or southwest side of the house. Dogwoods need plenty of water especially after planting. To keep your dogwood beautiful, you should water it well when the leaves begin to look droopy like they are just beginning to wilt. A well established dogwood will survive a drought reasonably well. The soil that you plant your dogwood tree in should have a pH range of 3.7 to 6.5, should be sandy, loamy or soil having some clay. Acidic soil works the best for your dogwood tree.

Trees from the wild should not be transplanted into your yard. Some wild dogwood trees have fungus, diseases or insect problems. The dogwood tree is susceptible to borers, anthracnose and flower and leaf spots. You should be careful when using lawnmowers and string trimmers around your dogwood.

Some types of dogwood trees are the Flowering Dogwood, the Kousa Dogwood and the Pagoda Dogwood. Of the Flowering Dogwood, there several different kinds: the Apple Blossom which has pink flowers, the Cherokee Chief which has red flowers, and the White Cloud which has soft white flowers.

Interesting facts of the dogwood: the State of Virginia has named the dogwood as their state tree.

In North Carolina, the dogwood tree seems to bloom out right at Easter whether Easter falls in March or April.


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