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Cherokee Sunset Flowering Dogwood

Cornus florida 'Cherokee Sunset'

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Cherokee Sunset Flowering Dogwood (Cornus florida 'Cherokee Sunset') at Frisella Nursery

Cherokee Sunset Flowering Dogwood foliage

Cherokee Sunset Flowering Dogwood foliage

(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)

Cherokee Sunset Flowering Dogwood (Cornus florida 'Cherokee Sunset') at Frisella Nursery

Cherokee Sunset Flowering Dogwood flowers

Cherokee Sunset Flowering Dogwood flowers

(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)

Height:  25 feet

Spread:  20 feet

Sunlight:  full sun  partial shade 

Hardiness Zone:  4b


A beautiful specimen tree, famous for its striking rose-red blooms, and lovely variegated foliage; requires rich, well-drained acidic soil and adequate precipitation, best with some shelter

Ornamental Features

Cherokee Sunset Flowering Dogwood features showy clusters of rose flowers with rose bracts held atop the branches in mid spring. It has attractive yellow-variegated light green foliage. The pointy leaves are highly ornamental and turn an outstanding antique red in the fall. It produces red berries from early to late fall. The warty gray bark adds an interesting dimension to the landscape.

Landscape Attributes

Cherokee Sunset Flowering Dogwood is a dense multi-stemmed deciduous tree with a stunning habit of growth which features almost oriental horizontally-tiered branches. Its average texture blends into the landscape, but can be balanced by one or two finer or coarser trees or shrubs for an effective composition.

This is a relatively low maintenance tree, and should only be pruned after flowering to avoid removing any of the current season's flowers. It is a good choice for attracting birds to your yard. Gardeners should be aware of the following characteristic(s) that may warrant special consideration;

  • Insects
  • Disease

Cherokee Sunset Flowering Dogwood is recommended for the following landscape applications;

  • Accent
  • General Garden Use

Planting & Growing

Cherokee Sunset Flowering Dogwood will grow to be about 25 feet tall at maturity, with a spread of 20 feet. It has a low canopy with a typical clearance of 3 feet from the ground, and is suitable for planting under power lines. It grows at a slow rate, and under ideal conditions can be expected to live for approximately 30 years.

This tree does best in full sun to partial shade. You may want to keep it away from hot, dry locations that receive direct afternoon sun or which get reflected sunlight, such as against the south side of a white wall. It requires an evenly moist well-drained soil for optimal growth, but will die in standing water. It is very fussy about its soil conditions and must have rich, acidic soils to ensure success, and is subject to chlorosis (yellowing) of the foliage in alkaline soils. It is quite intolerant of urban pollution, therefore inner city or urban streetside plantings are best avoided, and will benefit from being planted in a relatively sheltered location. Consider applying a thick mulch around the root zone in winter to protect it in exposed locations or colder microclimates. This is a selection of a native North American species.

Hardiness Zone Plant Height Minimum Sunlight Soil pH Preference
Accent  Garden 
Flowers  Fruit  Foliage Color  Fall Color  Plant Form  Bark  Winter Value  Attracts Wildlife 
Ornamental Features

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