- Family: Cornaceae
- Form: Deciduous, woody shrub to small tree with a multi-trunked nature reaching 10-25 feet tall and 10-15 feet wide. Prone to suckering. Grows in full sun to part shade.
- Leaves: Simple, opposite, elliptic to lance shaped with an acute apex and entire margins. 2-4 inches long. Dark green on top, lighter green underneath. Little to no color change in fall. Dogwoods can be easily identified by breaking apart a leaf; the false-veins tend to remain intact, parallel, and attached to both halves like cottony threads.
- Stem/Bark: Twigs are reddish in color turning gray with age. Older bark can become fissured.
- Flower: 2 inch wide compound inflorescences contain many small, white, 4-petaled flowers.
- Fruit: 0.25 inch smooth, bluish drupes born in clusters appear summer to early fall and are an attractive food source for birds.
- Comments: This species is tolerant of hydric conditions and is commonly found near lake edges, ponds, wetlands, and along streams. Two similar Cornus species occur in Florida: C asperifolia or Roughleaf Dogwood has rough leaves as the name would imply and is found in well-drained hammocks; while C. amomum or Silky Dogwood is sparsely found in wetlands of the central to western panhandle of the state. Cornus Florida or Flowering Dogwood is native to temperate eastern U.S. with a number of cultivars, and can be distinguished by its 4 showy petal like bracts.
- Additional Resources:
Florida Native Plant Society