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Cornus sericea ‘Baileyi’ (photo courtesy of Denver Botanic Gardens)
Cornus sericea ‘Baileyi’ (photo courtesy of Denver Botanic Gardens)

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Zone
Zones 2-9, 14-17, 31-34
Full SunPartial Sun
Full, Partial
Regular Water
Moderate

Cornus kousa

Kousa Dogwood
Cornaceae
Deciduous, Trees, Decorative fruit or berries

CORNUS

All dogwoods offer attractive foliage and blossoms; some have spectacular fruit or winter bark. Leaves of many types turn brilliant colors in fall. What appear to be flower petals in many dogwoods are actually bracts—petal-like modified leaves. These surround the inconspicuous true flowers.

Cornus kousa ‘Satomi’ (photo courtesy of Bailey Nurseries, Inc.)
Cornus kousa ‘Satomi’ (photo courtesy of Bailey Nurseries, Inc.)

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Cornus kousa

Native to Japan and Korea. Can be a big multistemmed shrub or—with training—a small tree to 20 ft. tall and wide (or even larger). Dense, spreading, horizontal growth habit and delicate limb structure.

Lustrous medium green leaves, 4 in. long, have rusty brown hairs at base of veins on undersurface. Flowers along tops of branches show above leaves in late spring or early summer (later than other flowering dogwoods). Creamy white, rather narrow, 2–3-in.-long bracts with slender, sharp-pointed tips turn pink along edges. In late summer and fall, inch-wide red fruits appear, resembling large raspberries hanging below branches. Yellow or scarlet autumn leaf color. Less susceptible to anthracnose than some other dogwoods.

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