Content Detail

Hybrid flowering dogwood, a cross between flowering dogwood and Kousa dogwood, is represented by several cultivars in the trade. Most are white-flowered although Stellar Pink® has pink flowers. These cultivars are resistant to dogwood borer and dogwood anthracnose, a serious disease of dogwood.

  • Family (English) Dogwood
  • Family (botanic) Cornaceae
  • Planting site Residential and parks, Under utility lines
  • Tree or plant type Tree
  • Foliage Deciduous (seasonally loses leaves)
  • Native locale Non-native
  • Size range Compact tree (10-15 feet), Small tree (15-25 feet)
  • Mature height 12-20 feet
  • Mature width 10-20 feet
  • Light exposure Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily), Partial sun / shade (4-6 hrs light daily)
  • Hardiness zones Zone 5 (Chicago), Zone 6, Zone 7, Zone 8, Zone 9
  • Soil preference Acid soil, Moist, well-drained soil
  • Tolerances Alkaline soil
  • Season of interest early fall, early spring, late summer, mid fall, mid spring
  • Flower color and fragrance Pink, White
  • Shape or form Multi-stemmed, Round
  • Growth rate Moderate
  • Transplants well Moderate
  • Planting considerations May be difficult to find in nurseries
  • Wildlife Birds, Insect pollinators
  • Has cultivars Yes

Native geographic location and habitat: 

These trees are of hybrid origin.

Bark color and texture: 

The bark is gray-brown.

Leaf or needle arrangement, size, shape, and texture: 

The leaves are opposite, simple, and rounded, with a pointed tip and wavy leaf margins. Veins grow toward the tip of the leaf without running to the edge. The fall color is reddish-purple.

Flower arrangement, shape, and size: 

The flowers appear large because of the four white or pink bracts. The true flowers are clustered in the center of the bracts.

Fruit, cone, nut, and seed descriptions: 

Clusters of bright red fruit ripen in fall. The fruit is Intermediate in size and shape between the fruit of the two parent trees.

Plant care: 

Hybrid flowering dogwood is best grown in areas with good drainage.  It prefers acid soils.

List of pests, diseases, and tolerance: 

The tree may not grow to its full potential in wet or alkaline soils. They are resistant to dogwood anthracnose, powdery mildew and dogwood borer.

These cultivars belong to the Stellar® series developed at Rutgers University.

Aurora® (Cornus x rutgersensis ‘Rutban’):

This cultivar has white floral bracts and flowers very heavily. This is a vigorous grower and has a form that is more spreading than other white-flowered cultivars. It shows good resistance to powdery mildew and dogwood anthracnose. Twenty year old specimens are 20 feet high and wide.

Celestial® (Cornus x rutgersensis ‘Rutdan’):

This tree has creamy white floral bracts and flowers heavily. This is another vigorous cultivar, but with a more upright form. It shows good resistance to powdery mildew and dogwood anthracnose.

Constellation® (Cornus x rutgersensis ‘Rutcan’):

This tree has creamy white floral bracts and flowers heavily. It is another vigorous cultivar, but with a very erect form. It shows good resistance to powdery mildew and dogwood anthracnose. Twenty year old specimens are 20 feet high and 17 feet wide.

Ruth Ellen® (Cornus x rutgersensis ‘Rutlan’): 

A cultivar with brilliant white floral bracts. This is another vigorous cultivar. It shows good resistance to powdery mildew and dogwood anthracnose. 

Stardust® (Cornus x rutgersensis ‘Rutfan’):

Another tree with white floral bracts. This is vigorous cultivar with a low-branching habit, branching low to the ground. It shows good resistance to powdery mildew and dogwood anthracnose. 

Stellar Pink® (Cornus x rutgersensis ‘Rutgan’): 

This tree has pink floral bracts. It is a vigorous cultivar with an erect habit. It shows good resistance to powdery mildew and dogwood anthracnose. Twenty year old specimens are 23 feet high and 18 feet wide.

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