Have you ever wondered what the inside of a dogwood (Cornus florida) seed looks like? If you read yesterday's Name that Seed post you caught a glimpse of some dogwood seeds that were cleaned off by the birds. Many birds enjoy eating the berries that form on flowering trees. In this case the bird ate the fleshy outer covering of the drupe leaving behind a more unfamiliar seed. (These never saw the inside of a bird. If they had I would never have gathered them so cavalierly!) Dogwood seeds need a period of stratification in order to break dormancy. A good way to simulate this is to put the seeds in a bag of moist (not soaking) potting medium in a plastic bag and put it in a refrigerator for about three months. In the spring plant the seeds into a pot and let them grow. Once fall arrives the small saplings can be planted in the ground or transplanted as needed. Eventually they will produce wonderful white displays in the springtime.
Dogwoods enjoy shade and thrive in understory conditions. They are a native tree to the eastern United States that grows up to 30 feet tall but tend to be much shorter. You can see some of the white flowers of the dogwood blooming with the redbuds (Cercis canadensis) along our back property line.
The winner of Name that Seed is Gail of Clay and Limestone! She really knows her seeds!
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Monday, December 22, 2008
Dogwood Seeds (Cornus florida)
Dave is the author of Growing The Home Garden and runs a small nursery business growing vegetables and herbs for local customers in Spring Hill, TN. (Blue Shed Gardens or FB page). He has written for gardening publications, Troy-Bilt and Lowe's and is available for edible garden consulting. Dave gardens organically and when he isn't writing, collecting seeds, or propagating plants he's parenting his 4 children as a stay at home dad.