I took the cuttings and treated them with rooting hormone on the off chance that I could make lemons out of lemonade. I suppose in this case it would be trees out of twigs. I kept the cuttings in sand for a couple weeks and just noticed new growth beginning a couple days ago. This is an excellent sign of rooting! The leaves are opening to get nourishment from the sun to generate new roots, stems, and leaves. Most likely the roots have already formed and are actively drinking up the water it needs for the growth process. I won't chance checking any of the cuttings just yet as only two have leaves showing so far and I don't want to disturb any roots that may have formed underneath until I am sure that the cuttings have had enough time to root.
You can see in the pictures that the little leaves that are just beginning to emerge. As the leaves develop and begin to absorb sunlight they will provide the cutting with more energy for growing stronger roots and more leaves.
While there is science behind this magical event it never fails to excite me when I see something new come alive. If it wasn't for the rabbits I never would have taken the cuttings of the small red twig dogwoods. They had just better stay away from our tomatoes this spring!
Other Red Twig Dogwood Posts:
Red Twig Dogwoods and Why I Like Them
Making More Red Twig Dogwoods
Red Twig Dogwood Propagation