Cornus mas

canstockphoto14578501Cornus mas, also known as cornelian cherry, is a small tree, 15 -25 feet tall, native to Europe and western Asia. Its ornamental value is in the flush of showy yellow flowers in early spring, followed by the bright red edible fruit(cherries) later in the season. Some selections have striking leaves of gold or variegated edges. Older trees also display colorful exfoliating bark of gray and brown. This characteristic is better viewed if the trees lower branches are trimmed up from the ground. The fruit can be used to make jams, sauces, and is also enjoyed by a variety of birds. It is deer tolerant and seldom bothered by pests and other maladies. Hardy to zone 4, full sun to part shade is the preferred siting in a variety of soils that do not dry out. Of the many cultivars available, those with all yellow or heavily variegated foliage, are best grown with more shade to avoid scorching. The fruit shows more brilliantly against a lighter colored leaf. A few cultivars that are grown for heavier fruit production are ‘Elegant’, ‘Pioneer’, and ‘Redstone’. We grow and sell Cornus mas here at the nursery. Because of its spring flowering, attractive foliage, and berries in the fall, it’s an another lovely specimen for the landscape.

14 comments on “Cornus mas

        • Research the health and medicinal benefits of Cornus mas, high in minerals and also a great antioxidant. Always great to have a food/medicinal cornucopia growing outside your door!

        • That’s for sure! I’ll do that. I’m trying to get my partner to stop popping pills in the form of supplements. He actually believes in plant medicines and feels drawn to shamanic healing, but yet he’s supplement crazy. He goes for them most in the winter and has winter skin problems. Correlation?

    • Forsythia does have similar flowers but different specimen. We have forsythia here as well, early blooming and a lower shrub.People count on it as one of the first bloomers in spring. Cornus mas (dogwood family) is a small tree, blooms in spring as well and has red berries in the fall. They also call it Cornelian cherry. We are all feeling anxious for spring to come and stay here in Maine, waiting for any sign of green and a little color.Soon, soon, I hope!

      • I must have never seen this one then! Can’t ever remember seeing one with red berries in the fall too. Sounds beautiful! I love all the plants that have more interest than just one season.

        We have a row of Azelias in the back that flower around December for us. The rest of the year, they’re just ho-hum green and boring. I’m telling them they don’t pull enough of their share to get to be “focal plants.” They never listen…

        Wishing you some spring weather soon! If I hike with my horse in the hills tomorrow I’ll get some shots to post of the winter green for you 🙂

  1. Gorgeous! My son had an old one in his landscape before he sold his home. He gave me lots of its babies that we planted in our Virginia landscape before we sold our home. Now we are both without….

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