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Swamp Dogwood is one of the blue-fruited species of its genus. At one time, Swamp Dogwood was considered a subspecies of Silky Dogwood and it was referred to as Cornus amomum obliqua. However, it is now regarded as a distinct species. Silky Dogwood (Cornus amomum) differs from Swamp Dogwood by having rusty hairs underneath its leaves and its leaves are usually more broad in shape. Another blue-fruited species, Stiff Dogwood (Cornus foemina), differs by having leaf undersides that are hairless and green, rather than whitened; it also differs by having hairless leafy shoots and white pith in its twigs. Alternate-Leaved Dogwood (Cornus alternifolia) has drupes that are blue-black; it differs from Swamp Dogwood by having alternate leaves with slightly more pairs of lateral veins (4-6), a more tree-like habit of growth, and twigs with small white pith. Another commonly used name of Cornus obliqua is Pale Dogwood.

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© John Hilty

Source: Illinois Wildflowers

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