Localities documented in Tropicos sources
Bolivia (South America)
Canada (North America)
Costa Rica (Mesoamerica)
Greenland (North America)
United States (North America)
Venezuela (South America)
Colombia (South America)
Note: This information is based on publications available through Tropicos and may not represent the entire distribution. Tropicos does not categorize distributions as native or non-native.
- Molina Rosito, A. 1975. Enumeración de las plantas de Honduras. Ceiba 19(1): 1–118. http://www.tropicos.org/Reference/866
- Jiménez Madrigal, Q. 2010. Cornaceae. En: Manual de Plantas de Costa Rica. Vol. 5. B.E. Hammel, M.H. Grayum, C. Herrera & N. Zamora (eds.). Monogr. Syst. Bot. Missouri Bot. Gard. 119: 129–131. http://www.tropicos.org/Reference/100003905
- Idárraga-Piedrahita, A., R. D. C. Ortiz, R. Callejas Posada & M. Merello. 2011. Flora de Antioquia. Catálogo de las Plantas Vasculares, vol. 2. Listado de las Plantas Vasculares del Departamento de Antioquia. Pp. 1-939. http://www.tropicos.org/Reference/100008595
- USDA, NRCS. 2007. The PLANTS Database (http://plants.usda.gov). National Plant Data Center, Baton Rouge. http://www.tropicos.org/Reference/100004579
effuse colony of Acrogenospora anamorph of Acrogenospora sphaerocephala is saprobic on rotten wood of Cornus
Foodplant / saprobe
apothecium of Bisporella sulfurina is saprobic on fallen branch of Cornus
Remarks: season: 9-2
Foodplant / saprobe
immersed, single or paired, beneath clypeus perithecium of Clypeosphaeria mamillana is saprobic on dead twig of Cornus
Remarks: season: (1)2-3
Foodplant / gall
larva of Craneiobia corni causes gall of leaf of Cornus
Foodplant / saprobe
sporodochium of Cryptocoryneum dematiaceous anamorph of Cryptocoryneum condensatum is saprobic on dead bark of Cornus
Foodplant / pathogen
Discula destructiva infects and damages live stem of Cornus
Foodplant / saprobe
effuse colony of Helminthosporium dematiaceous anamorph of Helminthosporium velutinum is saprobic on fallen, dead branch of Cornus
Foodplant / saprobe
hysterothecium of Hysterium angustatum is saprobic on dead, decorticate branch of Cornus
Remarks: season: 3-5
Foodplant / saprobe
superficial perithecium of Lasiosphaeria ovina is saprobic on Armillaria mellea-decayed wood of Cornus
Remarks: season: 9-4
Foodplant / saprobe
densely encrusting Lepidosaphes ulmi is saprobic on live branch of Cornus
Foodplant / saprobe
immersed or erumpent perithecium of Melomastia mastoidea is saprobic on dead branch of Cornus
Foodplant / saprobe
perithecium of Nectria mammoidea var. mammoidea is saprobic on fallen, dead branch of Cornus
Remarks: season: 9-5
Foodplant / spot causer
few, epiphyllous pycnidium of Phyllosticta coelomycetous anamorph of Phyllosticta cornicola causes spots on live leaf of Cornus
Remarks: season: 8-10
Foodplant / sap sucker
Pulvinaria regalis sucks sap of live branch of Cornus
Foodplant / saprobe
colony of Geniculosporium dematiaceous anamorph of Rosellinia aquila is saprobic on dead branch of Cornus
Remarks: season: 2-5
Foodplant / saprobe
colony of Xylohypha anamorphXylohypha dematiaceous anamorph of Xylohypha nigrescens is saprobic on wood of Cornus
Based on studies in:
Canada: Manitoba (Forest)
This list may not be complete but is based on published studies.
- R. D. Bird, Biotic communities of the Aspen Parkland of central Canada, Ecology, 11:356-442, from p. 410 (1930).
- R. D. Bird, Biotic communities of the Aspen Parkland of central Canada, Ecology, 11:356-442, from p. 406 (1930).
Molecular Biology and Genetics
Statistics of barcoding coverage
|Specimen Records:||280||Public Records:||154|
|Specimens with Sequences:||248||Public Species:||57|
|Specimens with Barcodes:||246||Public BINs:||0|
|Species With Barcodes:||58|
Locations of barcode samples
Cornus florida (flowering dogwood) is a species of flowering plant in the family Cornaceae native to eastern North America, from southern Maine west to southern Ontario, Illinois, and eastern Kansas, and south to northern Florida and eastern Texas, with a disjunct population in Nuevo León and Veracruz in eastern Mexico. In Ontario, this tree species has been assessed and is now listed as endangered.
Two subspecies are generally recognized:
- Cornus florida subsp. florida. Eastern United States, southeastern Canada (Ontario).
- Cornus florida subsp. urbiniana (Rose) Rickett (syn. Cornus urbiniana Rose). Eastern Mexico (Nuevo León, Veracruz).
Flowering dogwood is a small deciduous tree growing to 10 m (33 ft) high, often wider than it is tall when mature, with a trunk diameter of up to 30 cm (1 ft). A 10-year-old tree will stand about 5 m (16 ft) tall. The leaves are opposite, simple, ovate, 6–13 cm (2.4–5.1 in) long and 4–6 cm (1.6–2.4 in) 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 bracts 4 mm (0.16 in) long. Around 20 flowers are produced in a dense, rounded, umbel-shaped inflorescence, or flower-head, 1–2 cm (0.39–0.79 in) in diameter. The flower-head is surrounded by four conspicuous large white, pink or red "petals" (actually bracts), each bract 3 cm (1.2 in) long and 2.5 cm (0.98 in) broad, rounded, and often with a distinct notch at the apex. The flowers are bisexual.
When in the wild they can typically be found at the forest edge and popular on dry ridges. 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.
The fruit is a cluster of two to ten drupes, each 10–15 mm (0.39–0.59 in) long and about 8 mm (0.31 in) wide, which ripen in the late summer and the early fall to a bright red, or occasionally yellow with a rosy blush. They are an important food source for dozens of species of birds, which then distribute the seeds.
Flowering dogwood does best horticulturally in moist, acidic soil in a site with some afternoon shade, but good morning sun. It does not do well when exposed to intense heat sources such as adjacent parking lots or air conditioning compressors. It also has a low salinity tolerance. The hardiness zone is 5–9 and the preferred pH is between 6.0–7.0. In urban and suburban settings, care should be taken not to inflict mower damage on the trunk or roots, as this increases the tree’s susceptibility to disease and pest pressure.
In regions where dogwood anthracnose is a problem, homeowners and public land managers are encouraged to know the symptoms and inspect trees frequently. The selection of healthy, disease-free planting stock is essential and transplanting trees from the forest should be avoided. Sites should be selected for reasonably well-drained, fertile soils; full sun is recommended in high-hazard areas (such as stream or pond banks). New plantings should be mulched to a depth of 5 to 10 cm (2 to 4 in), avoiding the stem. Dead wood and leaves should be pruned and completely removed and destroyed yearly. Plants should be watered weekly during droughts, with watering done in the morning, avoiding wetting the foliage. Registered fungicides can be applied when necessary, according to manufacturers instructions and advice of local Extension Service.
Flowering dogwood is grown widely throughout the temperate world.
- Selected cultivars
- ‘Amerika Touch-O-Pink’ – large bracts, tinged pink; large leaves; good disease resistance.
- ‘Appalachian Spring’ – large white bracts; red fall foliage; resistant to dogwood anthracnose.
- 'Autumn Gold' - white bracts; yellow fall color.
- 'Barton' - large white bracts; blooms at early age; resistant to stem canker and powdery 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; consistently resistant to powdery mildew.
- '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 – northern part only.
- 'Hohman's Gold' - white bracts; variegated foliage.
- ‘Jean’s Appalachian Snow’ – large, overlapping white bracts w/ green flowers; very resistant to powdery mildew.
- ‘Karen’s Appalachian Blush’ – delicate white bracts edged in pink; some powdery mildew resistance.
- ‘Kay’s Appalachian Mist’ – stiff, creamy white bracts; red fall foliage; good resistance to powdery mildew.
- 'Plena' - double white bracts; spot anthracnose-resistant.
- 'Purple Glory' - red bracts; purple foliage; spot anthracnose-resistant but susceptible to stem canker.
- 'Weaver White' - large white blooms; large leaves; candelabra shape; good in north-central Florida.
Cornus florida is easily propagated by seeds, which are sown in the fall into prepared rows of sawdust or sand, and emerge in the spring. Germination rates for good clean seed should be near 100% if seed dormancy is first overcome by cold stratification treatments for 90 to 120 days at 4 °C (39 °F). Flowering dogwood demonstrates gametophytic self-incompatibility, meaning that the plants can’t self-fertilize. This is important for breeding programs as it means that it is not necessary to emasculate (remove the anthers from) C. florida flowers before making controlled cross-pollinations. These pollinations should be repeated every other day, as the flowers must be cross-pollinated within one or two days of opening for pollinations to be effective.
Softwood cuttings taken in late spring or early summer from new growth can be rooted under mist if treated with 8,000 to 10,000 ppm indole-3-butyric acid (IBA). In cold climates, potted cuttings must be kept in heated cold frames or polyhouses the following winter to maintain temperatures between 0 and 7 °C (32 and 45 °F). Although rooting success can be as high as 50–85%, this technique is not commonly used by commercial growers. Rather, selected cultivars are generally propagated by T-budding in late summer or by whip grafting in the greenhouse in winter onto seedling rootstock.
Micropropagation of flowering dogwood is now used in breeding programs aiming to incorporate resistance to dogwood anthracnose and powdery mildew into horticulturally and economically important cultivars. Nodal (axillary bud) sections are established in a culture of Woody Plant Medium (WPM) amended with 4.4 µmol/L 6-Benzyladenine (BA) to promote shoot growth. Rooting of up to 83% can be obtained when 5–7 week-old microshoots are then transferred to WPM amended with 4.9 µmol/L IBA.
Other old names now rarely used include American Dogwood, Florida Dogwood, Flowering Dogwood, Indian Arrowwood, Cornelian Tree, White Cornel, White Dogwood, 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. The hard, dense wood has been used for products such as golf club heads, mallets, wooden rake teeth, tool handles, jeweler’s boxes and butcher’s blocks. Cornus florida is the state tree and flower of Virginia. It is also the state tree of Missouri and state flower of North Carolina. It was used to treat dogs with mange, which may be how it got its name. The red berries are edible, but do not taste good.
Sapling of C. florida 'Appalacian Spring'
Leaves of C. florida 'Appalacian Spring'
Leaf closeup of C. florida 'Appalacian Spring'
Leaves of C. florida in the autumn
A pink-flowered C. florida.
White C. florida. 'Bay Beauty'. Note the double bracts.
- Cappiello, P and D Shadow. 2005. Dogwoods: The Genus Cornus. Timber Press, Portland. pp 98-100.
- Anderson, RL, JL Knighten, M Windham, K Langdon, F Hendrix, R Roncadori. 1994. Dogwood anthracnose and its spread in the South. Project Report R8-PR 26. USDA Forest Service, Atlanta, GA. 10pp.
- "RHS Plant Selector - Cornus florida 'Cherokee Chief'". Retrieved 17 July 2013.
- Cappiello, P and D Shadow. 2005. Dogwoods: The Genus Cornus. Timber Press, Portland. pp 100-102.
- Hartmann, HT, DE Kester, FT Davies, RL Geneve. 2002. Hartmann and Kester’s Plant Propagation: Principles and Practices, 7th Edition. Prentice Hall, Upper Saddle River, NJ. pp. 769.
- Reed, SM. 2004. Self-incompatibility in Cornus florida. HortScience 39(2): 335-338.
- Cappiello, P and D Shadow. 2005. Dogwoods: The Genus Cornus. Timber Press, Portland. pp 102.
- Kaveriappa, KM, LM Phillips, RN Trigiano. 1997. Micropropagation of flowering dogwood (Cornus florida) from seedlings. Plant Cell Reports 16: 485-489.
- Sharma, AR, RN Trigiano, WT Witte, OJ Schwarz. 2005. In vitro adventitious rooting of Cornus florida microshoots. Scientia Horticulturae 103: 381-385.
- 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.
- Cappiello, P and D Shadow. 2005. Dogwoods: The Genus Cornus. Timber Press, Portland. pp 100.
- "White Dogwood". Virginia Department of Forestry. Retrieved April 7, 2012.
- "Cornus florida". Missouri Botanical Garden. Retrieved April 7, 2012.
- "State Flower--Dogwood" (PDF). North Carolina Museum of History. Retrieved April 7, 2012.
- "Dogwood Questions and Answers". United States National Arboretum, United States Department of Agriculture. Retrieved April 7, 2012.
- "U.S. eyes 3,000 dogwoods for 'sakura' anniversary. The Japan Times. Posted: Jan. 17, 2012". Japantimes.co.jp. Retrieved 2014-03-28.
The genus Cornus is a group of about 30-60 species[Note 1] of woody plants in the family Cornaceae, commonly known as dogwoods. Most dogwoods are deciduous trees or shrubs, but a few species are nearly herbaceous perennial subshrubs, and a few of the woody species are evergreen. Several species have small heads of inconspicuous flowers surrounded by an involucre of large, typically white petal-like bracts, while others have more open clusters of petal-bearing flowers. The various species of dogwood are native throughout much of temperate and boreal Eurasia and North America, with China and Japan and the southeastern United States particularly rich in native species.
The dogwoods include the common dogwood (Cornus sanguinea) of Eurasia, the widely cultivated flowering dogwood (Cornus florida) of eastern North America, the Pacific dogwood (Cornus nuttallii) of western North America, the Kousa Dogwood (Cornus kousa) of eastern Asia, and two low-growing boreal species, the Canadian and Eurasian dwarf cornels (or bunchberries), Cornus canadensis and Cornus suecica, respectively.
Common name "dogwood"
The name "dog-tree" entered the English vocabulary by 1548, and had been further transformed to "dogwood" by 1614. Once the name dogwood was affixed to this kind of tree, it soon acquired a secondary name as the Hound's Tree, while the fruits came to be known as dogberries or houndberries (the latter a name also for the berries of black nightshade, alluding to Hecate's hounds). Another theory advances the view that "dogwood" was derived from the Old English dagwood, from the use of the slender stems of its very hard wood for making "dags" (daggers, skewers, and arrows). Another, earlier name of the dogwood in English is the whipple-tree. Geoffrey Chaucer uses "whippletree" in The Canterbury Tales ("The Knight's Tale", verse 2065) to refer to the dogwood. A whippletree is an element of the traction of a horse-drawn cart, linking the drawpole of the cart to the harnesses of the horses in file; these items still bear the name of the tree from which they are commonly carved.
Dogwoods have simple, untoothed leaves with the veins curving distinctively as they approach the leaf margins. Most dogwood species have opposite leaves, while a few, such as Cornus alternifolia and C. controversa, have their leaves alternate. Dogwood flowers have four parts. In many species, the flowers are borne separately in open (but often dense) clusters, while in various other species (such as the flowering dogwood), the flowers themselves are tightly clustered, lacking showy petals, but surrounded by four to six large, typically white petal-like bracts.
The fruits of all dogwood species are drupes with one or two seeds, often brightly colorful. The drupes of several species in the subgenera Cornus and Benthamidia are edible, though without much flavor. However, those of species in subgenus Swida are mildly toxic to people, though readily eaten by birds.
Dogwoods are used as food plants by the larvae of some species of butterflies and moths, including the Emperor moth, the Engrailed, the small angle shades, and the following case-bearers of the genus Coleophora: C. ahenella, C. salicivorella (recorded on Cornus canadensis), C. albiantennaella, C. cornella and C. cornivorella, with the latter three all feeding exclusively on Cornus.
Dogwoods are widely planted horticulturally, and the dense wood of the larger-stemmed species is valued for certain specialized purposes. Cutting Boards and other fine turnings can be made from this fine grained and beautiful wood.
Various species of Cornus, particularly the flowering dogwood (Cornus florida), are ubiquitous in American gardens and landscaping; horticulturist Donald Wyman stated "There is a dogwood for almost every part of the U.S. except the hottest and dryest areas". However, in England, the lack of sharp winters and hot summers makes Cornus florida very shy of flowering.
Many species in subgenus Swida are stoloniferous shrubs that grow naturally in wet habitats and along waterways. Several of these are used along highways and in naturalizing landscape plantings, especially those species with bright red or bright yellow stems, particularly conspicuous in winter, such as Cornus stolonifera.
Most of the species in subgenus Benthamidia, including the flowering dogwood, are small trees useful as ornamental plants. When flowering, they are of rare elegance and beauty, comparable to Carolina silverbell, Canadian serviceberry, and the Eastern redbud for their ornamental qualities.
Dense and fine-grained, dogwood timber has a density of .079 and is highly prized for making loom shuttles, tool handles and other small items that require a very hard and strong wood. Though it is tough for woodworking, some artisans favor dogwood for small projects such as walking canes, longbows, mountain dulcimers and fine inlays. Dogwood wood is an excellent substitute for persimmon wood in the heads of certain golf clubs (“woods”). Dogwood lumber is rare in the fact that it is not readily available with any manufacturer and must be cut down by the person(s) wanting to use it.
Larger items have also been occasionally made of dogwood, such as the screw-in basket-style wine or fruit presses. The first kinds of laminated tennis rackets were also made from this wood, cut into thin strips.
Dogwoods are grossly distinguished by the relative conspicuousness of their flowers and bracts (involucres). The following classification recognizes a single, inclusive genus Cornus, with four subgenera. Synonyms are given to provide equivalent names if these subgenera are recognized instead as the separate genera Benthamidia, Chamaepericlymenum, and Swida, in addition to a more narrowly taken Cornus, and also for a five-genus classification, in which Dendrobenthamidia is distinguished from a more narrowly taken Benthamidia. Note that the four species in the subgenus Cornus below retain the same names regardless of whether these additional genera are separately recognized. In a few cases, when a species listed here is sometimes separated instead into two species, that additional name is also listed, with the notation "here including ...".
Geographical ranges as native plants are given below. In addition, cultivated species occasionally persist or spread from plantings beyond their native ranges, but are rarely if ever locally invasive.[Note 2]
Bracts showy but flowers inconspicuous
Flower clusters inconspicuous, usually greenish, but surrounded by large, showy petal-like bracts; fruit usually red:
- Subgenus Benthamidia (syn. subgenus Dendrobenthamia, subgenus Cynoxylon). Flowering dogwoods; five species of trees, divisible into two subgroups (Benthamidia, with individual drupes, and Dendrobenthamia, with the drupes coalesced into a compound fruit).
- Cornus capitata (Benthamidia capitata, Dendrobenthamia capitata; Himalayan Flowering Dogwood). Himalaya.
- Cornus florida (Benthamidia florida; Flowering Dogwood). U.S. east of the Great Plains, north to southern Ontario.
- Cornus hongkongensis (Benthamidia hongkongensis, Dendrobenthamia hongkongensis; Hongkong Dogwood). Southern China, Laos, Vietnam.
- Cornus kousa (Benthamidia kousa, Dendrobenthamia kousa; Kousa Dogwood). Japan and (as subsp. chinensis) central and northern China.
- Cornus nuttallii (Benthamidia nuttallii; Pacific Dogwood). Western North America, from British Columbia to California.
- Cornus × rutgersensis (Hybrid: C. florida × C. kousa). Horticulturally developed.
- Subgenus Chamaepericlymenum. Bunchberries or Dwarf cornels; two species of creeping subshrubs growing from woody stolons.
- Cornus canadensis (Chamaepericlymenum canadense; Canadian Dwarf Cornel or Bunchberry) Northern North America, southward in the Appalachian and Rocky Mountains.
- Cornus suecica (Chamaepericlymenum suecicum; Eurasian Dwarf Cornel or Bunchberry). Northern Eurasia, locally in extreme northeast and northwest North America.
- Cornus × unalaschkensis (Hybrid: C. canadensis × C. suecica). Aleutian Islands (Alaska), Greenland, and Labrador and Newfoundland in Canada.
Flowers semi-showy, lacking large bracts
Flower clusters (cymes) semi-showy, usually white or yellow, with surrounding bracts (involucre) either small and deciduous, or lacking altogether; fruit red, blue, or white:
- Subgenus Cornus. Cornels; four species of shrubs or small trees; flower clusters with deciduous bracts (involucre).
- Subgenus Swida. Dogwoods; about 20-30 species of shrubs; flower clusters without an involucre.
- Cornus alba[Note 3] (Swida alba; Siberian Dogwood). Siberia and northern China.
- Cornus alternifolia (Swida alternifolia; Pagoda Dogwood or Alternate-leaf Dogwood). Eastern U.S. and southeastern Canada.
- Cornus amomum[Note 4] (Swida amomum; Silky Dogwood). Eastern U.S. east of the Great Plains except for the Deep South.
- Cornus asperifolia (Swida asperifolia; Toughleaf Dogwood). Southeastern Cornus austrosinensis (Swida austrosinensis; South China Dogwood). East Asia.
- Cornus bretschneideri (Swida bretschneideri; Bretschneider's Dogwood). Northern China.
- Cornus controversa (Swida controversa; Table Dogwood). East Asia.
- Cornus coreana (Swida coreana; Korean Dogwood). Northeast Asia.
- Cornus drummondii (Here including C. priceae; Swida drummondii; Roughleaf Dogwood). U.S. between the Appalachia and the Great Plains, and southern Ontario, Canada.
- Cornus foemina (Here including C. stricta; Swida foemina; Stiff Dogwood) Southeastern and southern United States.
- Cornus glabrata (Swida glabrata; Brown Dogwood or Smooth Dogwood). Western North America.
- Cornus hemsleyi (Swida hemsleyi; Hemsley's Dogwood). Southwest China.
- Cornus koehneana (Swida koehneana; Koehne's Dogwood). Southwest China.
- Cornus macrophylla (Swida macrophylla; Large-leafed Dogwood). East Asia.
- Cornus obliqua[Note 5] (Swida obliqua; Pale Dogwood). Northeastern and central U.S., and southeastern Canada.
- Cornus paucinervis (Swida paucinervis). China.
- Cornus racemosa (Swida racemosa; Northern Swamp Dogwood or Gray Dogwood). Northeastern and central U.S., and extreme southeastern Canada.
- Cornus rugosa (Swida rugosa; Round-leaf Dogwood). Northeastern and north-central U.S., and southeastern Canada.
- Cornus sanguinea (Swida sanguinea; Common Dogwood). Europe.
- Cornus sericea[Note 6] (Here including C. stolonifera; Swida sericea; Red Osier Dogwood).Northern and western North America, except Arctic regions.
- Cornus stricta[Note 7] (Swida stricta; Southern Swamp Dogwood). Southeastern Cornus walteri (Swida walteri; Walter's Dogwood). Central China.
- Cornus wilsoniana (Swida wilsoniana; Wilson's Dogwood). Central China.
The inflorescence ("flower") of the Pacific dogwood (Cornus nuttallii) is the official flower of the province of British Columbia. The flowering dogwood (Cornus florida) and its inflorescence are the state tree and the state flower respectively for the U.S. Commonwealth of Virginia. It is also the state tree of Missouri and the state flower of North Carolina.
The poet Virgil makes reference to a haunted copse of cornel and myrtle in Book III of the Aeneid. The hero Aneas attempts to break off boughs to decorate an altar, but instead the wood drips with black blood.
Many Christians consider the flowering dogwood's showy cross-like inflorescences ("flowers") to be religious symbols, due to their four white petal-like bracts bearing red dots on their tips; these trees are often in flower during the springtime Easter season in the Northern Hemisphere. Christian tradition claims the dogwood as the tree used to make the cross on which Jesus was crucified, and further, that dogwoods grew taller and broader until the 1st Century AD, making them suitable for use as crosses. In response to Jesus's death on one, God permanently stunted the growth of the dogwood species to prevent them ever again being used for the same purpose. Today, very few dogwood specimens would provide sufficient wood to manufacture a cross by the primitive means of the 1st Century AD.
In the Victorian Era, flowers or sprigs of dogwoods were presented to unmarried women by male suitors to signify affection. The returning of the flower conveyed indifference on the part of the woman; however, if she kept it, it became a sign of mutual interest.
The term "dogwood winter", in colloquial use in the American Southeast, is sometimes used to describe a cold snap in spring, presumably because farmers believed it was not safe to plant their crops until after the dogwoods blossomed.
- ^ 58 species according to Xiang et al. (2006)
- ^ For further detail on distributions of native North American dogwoods, see Cornus in BONAP's North American Plant Atlas.
- ^ Cornus sericea, treated separately here, is sometimes included in a more broadly taken concept of Cornus alba, which in that sense is also native in North America.
- ^ Cornus obliqua, here recognized separately, has been included in a broader concept of C. amomum by some botanists. Canadian reports for C. amomum are apparently all based on plants here classified as C. obliqua.
- ^ Cornus obliqua is sometimes included in a more broadly taken concept of C. amomum, also in the eastern U.S.
- ^ Cornus sericea (including C. stolonifera) is sometimes itself included in a more broadly taken concept of the otherwise Eurasian Cornus alba.
- ^ Cornus stricta is sometimes included in a more broadly taken concept of C. foemina, also in the eastern U.S.
- ^ Qiu-Yun (Jenny) Xiang, David T. Thomas, Wenheng Zhang, Steven R. Manchester and Zack Murrell (2006). "Species level phylogeny of the genus Cornus (Cornaceae) based on molecular and morphological evidence – implications for taxonomy and Tertiary intercontinental migration". Taxon 55 (1): 9–30. JSTOR 25065525.
- ^ Vedel, H., & Lange, J. (1960). Trees and Bushes in Wood and Hedgerow. Metheun & Co. Ltd., London.
- ^ Fernald, Merritt Lyndon (1950). Gray's Manual of Botany (8th ed.). New York: American Book Company.
- ^ Wyman's Garden Encyclopedia, s.v. "Cornus"
- ^ Alice M. Coats, Garden Shrubs and their Histories (1964) 1992, s.v. "Cornus".
- ^ Gunn, John C. (1835). Gunn's Domestic Medicine (4th ed.). p. 523. http://books.google.com/books?id=mf3OAAAAMAAJ.
- ^ Richard H. Eyde (1987). "The case for keeping Cornus in the broad Linnaean sense". Systematic Botany 12 (4): 505–518. JSTOR 2418886.
- ^ Richard H. Eyde (1988). "Comprehending Cornus: puzzles and progress in the systematics of the dogwoods". Botanical Review 54 (3): 233–351. JSTOR 4354115.
- ^ Rushforth, K. (1999). Trees of Britain and Europe. Collins ISBN 0-00-220013-9.
- ^ "Cornus florida × Cornus kousa". Landscape Plants: Images, identification, and information. Oregon State University. http://oregonstate.edu/dept/ldplants/corut.htm. Retrieved 20 May 2011.
- ^ "Cornus × rutgersensis 'Aurora'". Dave's Garden. http://davesgarden.com/guides/pf/go/92320/. Retrieved 20 May 2011.
- ^ Manchester, S.R.; Xiang, X-P.; Xiang, Q-Y (2010). "Fruits of Cornelian Cherries (Cornaceae: Cornus Subg. Cornus) in the Paleocene and Eocene of the Northern Hemisphere". International Journal of Plant Sciences 171 (8): 882-891. ftp://www.flmnh.ufl.edu/Projects/PaleobotanyWyoFieldtripReadings/ManchesterReprints/2010%20Cornelian%20Cherries%20%20Cornus.pdf.
- ^ Aeneid III 22-23: Forte fuit iuxta tumulus, quo cornea summo virgulta et densis hastilibus horrida myrtus.
- ^ http://www.farmersalmanac.com/weather/2011/04/25/what-is-dogwood-winter/
- ^ Hackney, P. 1992. "Stewart & Corry's Flora of the North-east of Ireland." Third edition. Institute of Irish Studies, The Queen's University of Belfast. ISBN 0-85389-446-9 (HB)
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