Despite the common name, Cornelian cherry is actually a dogwood. This deciduous, multi-stemmed shrub to small tree can become quite large with age. It is native to the woods of Europe and western Asian, and is one of the earliest shrubs to bloom there. Its small, yellow flowers appear in late winter to very early spring and are followed by red, cherry-like edible fruits in late summer that are tart and mealy.
The simple, ovate leaves of Cornelian cherry have smooth edges and are bright to medium green. In fall they turn unimpressive shades of greenish yellow, sometimes with purplish highlights. Mature specimens develop exfoliating, grayish-brown bark in addition to the green twigs or new growth from the previous year. Both offer winter interest. In late winter to early spring, the greenish twigs produce loads of tiny, yellow, star-like flower umbels. The flowers are not impressive alone but en masse they make the branches look like golden puffs of smoke. Bees are drawn to the lightly fragrant blooms. Edible, fleshy red fruits appear in late summer. These are not very tasty raw but can be processed into delicious jam. The fruit is only truly ripe when it is ready to fall from the branches.
Cornelian cherry can be grown in full sun to partial sun in a wide range of average soil types. Unlike many other dogwoods, it is tolerant of both alkaline and heavy clay soil. Specimens sometimes sucker from the base and may require selective pruning to maintain tidiness. (info source: Learn2Grow.com)
Genus - Cornus
Species - Mas
Common name - Cornelian Cherry
Pre-Treatment - Required
Hardiness zones - 4 - 8
Height - 15'-25' / 5 - 8 (12) m
Spread - 15'-20' / 5 - 6 (12) m
Plant type - Shrub
Vegetation type - Deciduous
Exposure - Full Sun, Partial Sun, Partial Shade
Growth rate - Medium
Soil PH - Neutral, Alkaline
Soil type - Clay, Loam, Well Drained
Water requirements - Average Water
Landscape uses - Edible, Foundation, Fruit / Fruit Tree, Hedges, Mixed Border, Screening / Wind Break
Bloom season - Early Spring
Leaf / Flower color - Green / Lemon Yellow
1. Soak the seeds in warm water for 24 hours.
2. Mix seeds with moist sand or vermiculite, place in ziplock bag or airtight container and stratify for 90 days in the fridge.
3. After stratification sow seeds ~6-8 mm (3/8") deep. Keep the soil moist during the germination.
4. Germinate in an area with indirect sunlight and where the temperature remains between +15-+20 C (60-68 F). Keep in good ventilated room or place. Good air circulation is required.
Spray the seeds periodically with room-temperature water from a misting bottle to ensure they remain moist.
Seeds typically germinate within 20 days to three months.
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