Gray dogwoods are small trees that grow naturally in dappled shade in the forest. Gray dogwood trees produce tiny yellow flowers surrounded by showy white or pink bracts in mid- to late spring. They need only enough pruning to maintain their shape and to remove deadwood or suckers growing from the base.
Prune dead, diseased or injured branches. Cut them off at the branch collar, the slight swelling that forms a ring around the branch, right next to the branch from which it grows.
Prune any branches that cross each other or rub against another branch, cutting just above the branch collar.
Remove any shoots growing from the base of the gray dogwood tree or from below the graft union.
Cut off any low-hanging branches that could interfere with someone walking under the tree.