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Monday, October 3, 2011

Kousa Dogwood

I doubt many of you know a Kousa Dogwood from a regular one. Well, this is one all berried and ready for birds to nibble on least I think they must. The berries, or seed pods, are never there after the winter and they don't show up on the ground around the shrub so....I just assume the birds have at them. Good guess, I'd say.

I like the Kousa Dogwood. It looks very pretty in spring when it flowers, the leaves turn a nice burgundy color in autumn and these berries are lovely, too. Weird as it may seem I prefer the regular dogwood, Cornus florida. Why? Two reasons...maybe three.

The flowers...

...and the seeds.

The third reason is a silly one, but I'll tell you anyway. When I was a kid living out on Long Island my uncle had a flowering dogwood tree in his front yard and my cousins and I used to take the seeds off the tree and throw them at each other. It was fun! Silly, yes, but fun. So, I would say it's the good memories associated with that tree which make me like it better than the Kousa.

I never knew the Kousa until I came to live in the Poconos--a nasty USDA zone 5, by the way. I tried in vain to grow a Cornus florida, but it just never would take. I didn't understand it. All the books, even the famed Arbor day foundation Book of trees insisted it was hardy here, and yet I could not grow it. I had to settle for the much hardier Kousa.

I'll have you know I've not given up on growing the flowering dogwood. I've seen them in the Poconos growing nicely so I know it can be done. It may just be my swampy land. I'll have to fix that somehow.


  1. Well, I do not know a regular Dogwood either.

  2. Oh, I'm sure you do, you just may not know you know them. Flowering dogwoods are all over the south! Some are pink and red flowering, but most are white. Very nice, smallish ornamental trees.

  3. Indeed they are lovely trees. The first home I purchased on my own as a single woman had one in the front yard. I don't remember the variety but the flowers were pink. Unfortunately, no variety of dogwood can handle life in the desert.

  4. Dogwoods could not possibly make it in that heat, Diane. Guess I should be satisfied with the Kousa. Silly me!

  5. Ah ... They probably have them in the parking lot here, well, at least one of them.


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