Flowering dogwood is known scientifically as Cornus florida, and it is a popular ornamental throughout the United States. Typically, flowering dogwood is a spreading tree that produces white flowers and it does well in wet climates and loamy soil. There are many different varieties of flowering dogwood that might suit your tastes and your garden.
‘Rubra’ flowering dogwood trees can produce white flowers or flowers in a variety of shades of pink. They have curved oval leaves, and in the fall, they produce red or purple foliage. The flowers drop and leave behind bright red winter berries. Rubra flowering dogwood requires a rich organic soil that is well drained and slightly acidic. It does best in partial shade, but you can plant it in full sun if you give it enough water. It is a medium-sized tree that grows to a full height of 20 feet, according to the Backyard Gardener.
White Cloud flowering dogwood produces dense clusters of creamy white flowers. It can grow to a height that is between 15 and 30 feet, and it does well in full sun or partial shade. It has medium water requirements. One of the advantages of this variety of flowering dogwood, according to the Backyard Gardener, is that it begins to flower early within the first few years of its growth, making it a good choice for gardens where some visual variety is required immediately.
‘Cherokee Chief’ flowering dogwoods have deep red blooms, which distinguishes them from the paler blooms of many flowering dogwood trees. Although they have only a moderate growth rate, they are resistant to mildew, making them a good choice for damper areas, especially if planted in the shade, notes North Carolina State University. In the fall, this cultivar produces bronze-colored leaves.
The greatest appeal of the ‘Golden Nugget’ flowering dogwood is its variegated golden leaves, according to the Washington State University Clark County Extension. This variety of flowering dogwood reaches a height between 15 and 20 feet, and it is capable of withstanding full sun. It produces button-like clusters of white flowers in the spring, which drop in late summer, leaving behind bright red berries. In fall, the leaves turn light red.