Alphabetical Plant Listing

Cornus alba (Tatarian Dogwood)

Tatarian Dogwood, Red-Barked Dogwood, White Dogwood, Siberian Dogwood


Noted for its colorful stems and twigs in winter, Cornus alba (Tatarian Dogwood) is a medium-sized ornamental shrub with great appeal. Rapidly-growing, adaptable to wet soils or dry soils, it enjoys spectacular decorative features: stunning fall color, attractive berries, showy red stems and sometimes a lovely variegated summer foliage. A spectacular addition in the garden for most seasons, Tatarian Dogwood certainly adds a WOW! to a winter landscape.

  • Cornus alba is a multi-stemmed, suckering, deciduous shrub with an upright oval to rounded habit when young, becoming either arching and spreading or open and straggly with age. It grows at a fast rate, typically up to 8-10 ft. high and across (240-300 cm), but there are many dwarf or larger varieties available.
  • The stems are often numerous and beautifully radiate from the base of the shrub. They develop their intense and showy coloration, usually red, in fall and winter.
  • Flat-topped clusters of tiny creamy-white flowers, 2 in. wide (5 cm), appear in late spring and sometimes sporadically flower in late summer or early fall. While not especially showy, they attract happy butterflies and pollinators and give way in midsummer to clusters of white berries, sometimes tinged with blue, that are greedily devoured by birds
  • The summer foliage consists of elliptic to ovate leaves, either solid green or variegated, with veins curving and parallel to the entire margins. The fall color is insignificant among cultivars with variegated leaves. Other cultivars have yellow or red-purple fall color.
  • Tatarian dogwood is similar in appearance to redtwig dogwood (C. sericea/stolonifera), but generally does not spread as aggressively. Promptly remove root suckers if colonial spread is undesired
  • Cornus alba performs best in full sun to part shade, in organically rich, medium moisture, well-drained soils. It is not fussy about soils provided they are kept evenly moist and well-drained. Tolerates many conditions, including wet soils, dry soils, poor soils. It is more vulnerable to diseases in hot summer climates (south of USDA Zone 7)
  • Generally disease free, Cornus alba may be affected by aphids, mussel scale, horse chestnut scale and glasshouse red spider mite.
  • Easy to grow, easy to care fordeer and rabbit resistant.
  • Cornus alba looks spectacular when massed to emphasize and accentuate the cold season red stem color. Great choice for shrub borders, as an informal hedge or screen, for foundation plantings, banks and slopes (erosion control), or planted in naturalistic plantings where it can freely spread and form thickets.
  • While pruning is not required, it should be noted that the best winter stem color appears on new growth. For the best display, cut the stems flush to the ground every 2-3 years in early spring, just as the leaf buds start to swell. This radical pruning, however, means that you will have a bare spot in the garden for a few weeks and miss the creamy-white flowers or attractive berries since they only form on second-year growth. Alternatively, if severe pruning seems to onerous, one quarter or one third of the oldest stems could be pruned in early spring of each year, to stimulate the growth of new stems.
  • Propagated primarily by rooted stem cuttings
  • Favorite Cornus alba cultivars are:
    Cornus alba 'Aurea' - an interesting variety with soft yellow leaves and red stems in winter. Up to 8 ft. (240 cm). AGM Award
    Cornus alba 'Bailhalo' or 'Ivory Halo' - a compact variety slowly growing to 5-7 ft. (150-210 cm) with very thin, red stems in winter. Leaf spot susceptibility
    Cornus alba 'Elegantissima' or 'Argenteo Marginata' - A lovely variegated form with gray-green leaves with creamy-white variegated margins. Perfect at brightening a shady area. Fast grower to 8 ft. tall and wide (240 cm). Thin, red stems in winter. AGM Award
    Cornus alba 'Gouchaultii' - A charming cultivar with a particularly handsome variegated foliage including yellow, rose, and white shades. Up to 7 ft. tall and wide (210 cm). Deep red stems in winter
    Cornus alba 'Sibirica' - stunning bright coral red stems in winter and blue fruits in summer. Foliage turns reddish in fall. Up to 6 ft. tall and wide (180 cm). AGM Award
  • Cornus alba is a species of dogwood native to eastern and central Asia. It is widely grown as an ornamental plant, whose available cultivars have been selected for their winter glowing colors.

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Requirements

Hardiness 2 – 7
Heat Zones 1 – 8
Climate Zones 1A, 1B, 2A, 2B, 3A, 3B, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, A2, A3
Plant Type Shrubs
Plant Family Cornus - Dogwoods
Exposure Full Sun, Partial Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Late)
Summer (Early,Mid,Late)
Fall
Winter
Height 8' – 10' (240cm – 3m)
Spread 8' – 10' (240cm – 3m)
Spacing 96" – 120" (240cm – 300cm)
Water Needs Average
Maintenance Low
Soil Type Chalk, Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Moist but Well-Drained, Well-Drained
Characteristics Showy
Tolerance Deer, Rabbit, Dry Soil, Wet Soil
Attracts Birds, Butterflies
Garden Uses Banks and Slopes, Beds and Borders, Hedges and Screens
Garden Styles City and Courtyard, Informal and Cottage, Prairie and Meadow, Traditional Garden

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While every effort has been made to describe these plants accurately, please keep in mind that height, bloom time, and color may differ in various climates. The description of these plants has been written based on numerous outside resources.


Requirements

Hardiness 2 – 7
Heat Zones 1 – 8
Climate Zones 1A, 1B, 2A, 2B, 3A, 3B, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, A2, A3
Plant Type Shrubs
Plant Family Cornus - Dogwoods
Exposure Full Sun, Partial Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Late)
Summer (Early,Mid,Late)
Fall
Winter
Height 8' – 10' (240cm – 3m)
Spread 8' – 10' (240cm – 3m)
Spacing 96" – 120" (240cm – 300cm)
Water Needs Average
Maintenance Low
Soil Type Chalk, Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Moist but Well-Drained, Well-Drained
Characteristics Showy
Tolerance Deer, Rabbit, Dry Soil, Wet Soil
Attracts Birds, Butterflies
Garden Uses Banks and Slopes, Beds and Borders, Hedges and Screens
Garden Styles City and Courtyard, Informal and Cottage, Prairie and Meadow, Traditional Garden

Great Plant Combination Ideas with Cornus - Dogwoods

Guides with Cornus - Dogwoods

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