Planting a Dogwood
Planting & Soil Type
Watering & Stimulators
Kousa vs. Cornus Florida
Dogwoods are adapted to a variety of climates and soils, but they naturally grow in moist, fertile soils high in organic matter.
They perform best when it receives shade during the hottest part of the day. With proper care and dedication, however, it can grow in full sun. Finding a planting area where the tree will receive morning sun and a break from the hot afternoon summer hours is typically the best solution. Mulching the roots deeply also helps keep them cooler.
Planting & Soil Types
Dogwoods do not like soil that does not drain well. It is suggested to plant dogwoods no deeper than they are in the container or burlap root ball. It is better to always plant a tree level with the ground or slightly higher... planting too deeply will make problems for any planting and can result in the loss of the tree.
Place soil that has been loosened to a depth of 8-12 inches depending on the root ball. Organic matter such as compost or peat moss can help root growth when mixed with the soil around a new tree. Adding too much organic matter, however, can create a micro-environment that the tree's roots will not want to leave.
Watering & Stimulators
As with any newly planted tree, adequate water during the first year is very important to survival. After the first year of watering thoroughly 1-2 times a week, ( depending on temperatures) you can stop regular watering unless we are having an extended dry period. It is always best to avoid overwatering or "watering a small amount every day". This is bad practice that does not benefit the tree, especially in hot weather.
We highly recommend application of root-stimulators after planting. 2-3 applications one or two weeks apart is the best option. We typically do not recommend applying high nitrogen fertilizers the first year as you wish to promote root growth instead of trying to make the tree grow faster. Root stimulators can also be applied the following Spring. It is an exceptionally safe product for promoting roots for any plant.
Dogwood borer is the most common insect pest on established dogwoods. The larvae can kill branches and entire trees. Prevent infestation by avoiding damage to bark when using mowing or weed trimmer equipment. Products such as systemic insecticides can be applied to the root ball during the growing season that will protect the tree from borer and insect issues.
White Flowering Dogwoods
"Cloud 9" - Blooms early and heavily
"Cherokee Princess" - Large flowers
Pink Flowering Dogwoods
"Cherokee Chief" - Deep ruby-red
"Stellar Pink" - lighter pink
Kousa vs Cornus florida
Cornus florida, our native Dogwoods, bloom first and leaf out later. These have the classic flower petal shape that Dogwoods are known for.
Kousa dogwoods are a variety that leaf out first and bloom later, extending the blooming period. The flower petals have a unique pointed end and gives it a star like appearance. Kousas are also known to be a bit more tolerant of sunny locations.
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