How to Successfully Plant Dogwood Trees From Seeds


Dogwood is a hardy tree, native to the eastern U.S. and very common in southern states such as Georgia. In fact, it's the state tree of Virginia. Dogwood blossoms profusely, especially in hardiness zones 5 through 8. Dogwoods typically grow 25 to 30 feet tall and are commonly propagated by seeds. Seeds should be collected late in the season, between October and November.

Step 1

Collect fresh dogwood seeds in the fall when the blooms are wilted and the seeds are exposed.

Step 2

Soak the seeds in a bowl of water for two or three days. Discard any seeds that float and keep those that don't.

Step 3

Rub the fleshy meat off the soaked seeds using your thumb and forefinger and allow the bare seeds to dry on a paper towel.

Step 4

Fill a 6-inch growing pot (with drain hole) with one part peat moss mixed with one part sand. Plant Dogwood seeds approximately a half-inch deep, one per pot. It is best to plant several pots in case not all the seeds germinate.

Step 5

Place pots in a warm (65 to 75 degree F,) and sunny location, but out of direct sunlight. Seeds should sprout within 21 to 28 days. Once sprouted, the trees can receive direct sunlight for three to four hours per day.

Step 6

Fertilize lightly with 1/4 teaspoon of 10-10-10 fertilizer sprinkled over the soil when the seedlings are 3 inches tall. Water and fertilize again in six weeks.

Step 7

Dig a hole outside that's twice as wide as the root ball, and just as deep, once the plant is a year old. Mix the peat moss with the garden soil until you have approximately a 50/50 mix.

Step 8

Remove the tree from the pot carefully, gently rubbing some of the dirt from the roots without damaging them. Place the seedling in the hole and gently press soil around it with your fingers, planting it no deeper than it was growing in the pot. Water well and keep the soil moist but not soggy until signs of growth appear. Reduce water to twice per week.

Things You'll Need

  • Freshly collected Dogwood seeds
  • Bowl of water
  • Paper towel
  • Ggrowing pot, 6-inch
  • Peat moss
  • Sand


  • University of Georgia: Growing Dogwood
  • U.S. Forestry Service Fact Sheet: Growing Flowering Dogwood
Keywords: plant dogwood seeds, growing dogwood trees, propagating dogwood seeds

About this Author

Larry Parr has been a full-time professional freelance writer for more than 30 years. For 25 years he wrote cartoons for TV, everything from SMURFS to SPIDER-MAN.