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Pagoda Dogwood

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A truly special plant for northern landscapes, valued for its almost “oriental” horizontal branching habit; white flowers in spring, blue berries and purple fall color; quite fussy, needs a cool, moist site with afternoon shade, also prefers acidic soil

Characteristics

Species:
alternifolia
Average Landscape Height:
20 feet
Average Landscape Width:
20 feet
Genus:
Cornus
Branching:
multi-stemmed
Plant Form:
layered
Canopy:
low
Density:
open
Growth Rate:
slow
Pruning:
best if not pruned
Flower Color:
cream
Flower Fragrance:
high
Flower Period:
in late spring
Summer Foliage Color:
lawn green
Fall Color:
burgundy
Maximum Light:
full sun
Minimum Light:
partial shade
Maximum Moisture:
moist
Minimum Moisture:
moist

Ornamental Features

Pagoda Dogwood has clusters of fragrant creamy white flowers held atop the branches in late spring. It has emerald green deciduous foliage. The pointy leaves turn an outstanding burgundy in the fall. It produces navy blue berries in mid summer.

Landscape Attributes

Pagoda Dogwood is an open multi-stemmed deciduous tree with a stunning habit of growth which features almost oriental horizontally-tiered branches. Its average texture blends into the landscape, but can be balanced by one or two finer or coarser trees or shrubs for an effective composition.

Planting & Growing

Pagoda Dogwood will grow to be about 20 feet tall at maturity, with a spread of 20 feet. It has a low canopy with a typical clearance of 2 feet from the ground, and is suitable for planting under power lines. It grows at a slow rate, and under ideal conditions can be expected to live for approximately 30 years.

This tree does best in full sun to partial shade. It requires an evenly moist well-drained soil for optimal growth, but will die in standing water. It is particular about its soil conditions, with a strong preference for rich, acidic soils. It is quite intolerant of urban pollution, therefore inner city or urban streetside plantings are best avoided, and will benefit from being planted in a relatively sheltered location. Consider applying a thick mulch around the root zone in winter to protect it in exposed locations or colder microclimates. This species is native to parts of North America.

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