C as in Cornus

C as in Cornus. Blogging from A to Z April (2015) Challenge | My Green NookFamily: Cornaceae

Genus: Cornus

Species: Cornus mas

Common names: dogwood, cornelian cherry, european cornel Swedish name: körsbärskornell

The genus Cornus includes about fifty species of flowering shrubs and trees native in the temperate and boreal regions of the Northern hemisphere. Most of the Cornus species may be distinguished by their blossoms, berries, and distinctive bark. The fruit is named dogberries, houndberries or black nightshade. The fruit of Cornus mas is edible and tastes like a mix between sour cherry and cranberry. It is mainly used in jams and sauces. The fruit is very high in vitamin C. The wood of Cornus mas is extremely dense which makes it hard to prune. It sinks in water unlike the wood of most other woody plant species. This density makes it valuable for crafting into tool handles and parts for machines.

C as in Cornus. Blogging from A to Z April (2015) Challenge | My Green Nook

Cornus mas. Fruit (left) and flower (right) Photos: Wendy Cutler and prilfish ©

Description: Cornus mas is a deciduous shrub (up to four meters high) or a small tree (about eight meters high), with a quite low and wide growth. Cornus mas blooms before the leaves burst, like the Forsythia. The flowers are brightly yellow. In Sweden the blossom occurs in Mars to April which makes it valuable as an early Spring flowering plant. You have to be patient though since the individuals set their first flowers after five years or more. But it is totally worth the waiting since the sight is grandiose.

How to grow: Cornus mas is modest and have no strict demands of its habitat. It usually does not need to be pruned and does not need any special treatment. It is preferably planted like a solitary catching your eyes while passing by or sitting by the breakfast table. Cover the ground around it with bulbs which blossoms at the same time to make a spectacular scenery.

Recipe: Cornelian Cherry Sauce Recipe from Britain


© The photos are licensed by Creative Commons and some rights are reserved. License Attribution 2.0. Some slightly changes have been made.

17 thoughts on “C as in Cornus

  1. This plant is new to me. I wonder if it grows in Holland too; I’ll have to ask my MIL. I love the yellow flowers, but looking at it makes me want to sneeze. Ahhh, hay fever 🙂

    I’m very curious about that mixed taste of the fruit. It’s one of those that I won’t like, but it won’t stop me from trying 2 more 🙂


  2. I was hoping I would find a few new plants this month from your series to use in on my property and already I have one! This is perfect for me as it doesn’t grow too tall and one of my requirements for any big investments is that they return to us food.


  3. Interesting! I have heard mentions of dogwood flowers and always wondered who named such a pretty thing “dogwood.” Also interesting that it sinks…

    @TarkabarkaHolgy from
    Multicolored Diary – Epics from A to Z
    MopDog – 26 Ways to Die in Medieval Hungary


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