Cornus alternifolia

42.14294815, -87.78515625

42.14775467, -87.79122162

42.14907837, -87.78721619

42.1491394, -87.78729248

42.15006256, -87.78940582

42.15007019, -87.78790283

42.15039444, -87.78955841

42.15177536, -87.79345703

42.15195084, -87.79035187

42.15201187, -87.79042816

Pagoda Dogwood

The pagoda dogwood gets its common name because its distinctive horizontal branching habit appears to belong in a Japanese garden, though it is a native species. Its scientific name Cornus alternifolia indicates that its leaves alternate on the branch, unlike most of the rest of the Cornus genus. Small yellowish-white flowers are borne in late May and early June and are followed by bluish-black fruit in July that is much beloved by birds. Fall foliage is reddish purple.

Members of the genus Cornus, commonly known as dogwoods, are welcome in the home garden for their multi-season interest -- be it flowers, fruit, foliage, and/or bark -- and their range of forms from small trees to suckering shrubs. The dominant display, however, varies among the species.

Dogwoods are native to cooler temperate areas of North America and Asia. The genus includes 45-60 species, divided into subgenera about which taxonomists disagree. The Chicago Botanic Garden's collection includes almost 100 varieties of dogwood from 20 species (7 of which are native) and over 2,400 plants.

Plant Shape:
Full Sun
Partial Shade
Bloom Time:
May - June
Bloom Color:
Landscape Use:
Specimen Plant
Wildlife Interest:
Attracts Birds
Native to Midwest
Plant Type:
Hardiness Zone:
3 - 7