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Dogwood Tree Varieties

By Marie Roberts ; Updated September 21, 2017
Dogwood blooms
dogwood tree flowers image by Jorge Moro from Fotolia.com

Dogwood is a popular spring-flowering tree with over 100 varieties and cultivars (Cornus florida) grown in the United States. Dogwood trees are deciduous, with a rounded leaf canopy and grow up to 40 feet tall. Cold hardy to 15 degrees F, some cultivars do not receive enough cold weather to grow well in warmer climates, such as Florida. Dogwoods prefer full sun to partial shade, and nutrient-rich, well-drained, acidic soils. Dogwoods do not tolerate drought or waterlogged conditions. Actual dogwood flowers are small, and greenish-yellow. The showy parts people call the flower are petal-like bracts.

Cornus florida rubra

Rubra is a dogwood variety with a moderate growth rate and pink flowers (bracts). It grows 20 to 25 feet tall and has light green foliage during spring, dark green in summer and red-purple foliage during fall.

Cherokee Chief

Cherokee Chief is a cultivated variety (cultivar) with red flowers and grows to 15 feet tall. Cherokee Chief has yellow-green to green foliage during spring and summer, and bronze foliage during fall.

Cherokee Princess

Cherokee Princess is a slow growing cultivar up to 15 feet tall, with larger than average white flowers. It has yellow-green to green foliage in the spring and summer, and red leaves in the fall.

Cherokee Daybreak

Cultivar Cherokee Daybreak, with white flowers, reaches a height of 25 feet. Its foliage is light green in the spring, variegated in the summer, and pink to deep red during fall.


Mystery is a dogwood tree that grows to 14 feet tall, with a 12-foot spread and a slow growth rate. Its flowers are white and the foliage is yellow-green to green during spring and summer, and red-purple during fall. Mystery is considered an early flowering cultivar.

Purple Glory

Purple Glory grows slowly, reaching 15 feet tall. This red-flower variety has red-green foliage during spring, purple foliage in summer, and red-purple foliage during fall.

Cherokee Sunset

Cherokee Sunset reaches a height of 25 feet with a moderate growth rate. It has purplish-red flowers, with red-purple foliage during spring, variegated leaves during summer, and red purple foliage during fall.


About the Author


Marie Roberts is a writer based in Florida. She has a B.S. in horticultural sciences. Roberts began writing in 2002.