Cherokee Chief Dogwood
A Festival of Red
Richly colored rose-red to ruby-red blooms are the reason Cherokee Chief Dogwood (Cornus florida ‘Cherokee Chief’) is one of the best red-flowering dogwoods. But the blooms aren’t the only reddish feature -- the newly emerging spring-to-summer foliage is tinged with red; the fall leaf color is red; and brilliant red berries persist on trees after the leaves drop in autumn. So if red is your favorite landscape plant color, put Cherokee Chief Dogwood tree at the top of your must-have list!
A Versatile Dogwood
1. Seasonal color. Cherokee Chief Dogwood provides red color through all four seasons with its spring blossoms, new leaves in spring and summer, fall foliage and winter berries -- a true four-season-interest plant.
2. Bird-friendly. Not only do birds enjoy the berries in fall and winter, but they’ll also build their nests and raise their young in these trees.
3. Shade-tolerant. If you have a shady yard, Cherokee Chief Dogwood is the perfect choice for a small, flowering tree that is shade-tolerant.
Native Plant Origin with Improved Features
Plant Cherokee Chief Dogwood near your favorite sitting area -- a patio or deck -- so you can enjoy watching the birds as they feast on the bright-red berries in autumn and early winter. As an improved cultivar of the native dogwood tree (Cornus florida), Cherokee Chief Dogwood provides a colorful focal point to break up the monotony of a lawn. It’s a perennial in USDA Plant Hardiness Zones 5 through 9, where it thrives as a border plant or understory tree.
Helpful Growing Tips
Use this checklist to care for your Cherokee Chief Dogwood:
• Sun. Choose a location that is protected from direct afternoon sun, but which offers morning sun to enhance the tree’s growth and color.
• Soil. The roots will rot in overly wet soils without adequate drainage, so be sure the soil drains well.
• Water. First-year trees need adequate water to help strengthen their developing root systems. In subsequent years, water trees during periods of drought or in unseasonably hot and dry summers.
• Fertilizer. Use a fertilizer at the rate and type suggested by soil-test results.
• Mulch. Trees benefit from 2 to 3 inches of mulch, which helps keep roots cool and conserves moisture.
• Pruning. Structurally sound and resistant to breaking, Cherokee Chief Dogwood grows into a naturally balanced tree without the need for pruning.