This guide is meant to teach you how to propagate Redosier Dogwood (Cornus sericea) and hopefully make it easier for you to sell them at your own nursery.
Hardiness Zone: 2-8
Soil Type: Moist but well-drained chalk, clay, loam, sand
Water: Average to High
Exposure: Full Sun to Partial Shade
Redosier dogwood (Cornus sericea) is a vibrant zone 2 perennial shrub that adds color to the otherwise bland winter months. The red branches on this tree keep their colors all year long.
Dogwood leaves are elliptical to egg-shaped, with entire margins (smooth), and grow on the stems in opposite arrangements.
It grows fast, blooms fragrant white flowers, and produces attractive white berries eaten by birds and boreal forest mammals.
Redosier dogwood is a suckering plant, which means it sends out new shoots nearby through rhizomes underground and spreads quickly.
Redosier dogwood attracts Waterfowl, Marshbirds, and Shorebirds.
It is the larval host of the Spring Azur butterfly.
Best Way to Propagate Redosier Dogwood
Since redosier dogwood naturally propagates through layering, it does much of the work for you!
What you can do to encourage ground layering is to plant a ‘mother’ dogwood deeper into the ground than you normally would. This plant will be your source of new plants through layering.
When you do that, its branches will be closer to the ground and have more chances of rooting naturally.
Alternatively, you can select the longest branches and bury them underground yourself. Hold them down with a landscaping pin and eventually, they will root. Afterward, you can separate the branch from the main plant and transplant it.
The best method to propagate redosier dogwood is by taking cuttings.
Take cuttings from 1-year-old wood during spring, before the buds start to open. Redosier dogwood cuttings need to be about 12-15 inches long ea (30-38cm) and at least 3/8 inch (1cm) in diameter on small ends.
Propagate redosier dogwood by cuttings in 4 easy steps
- Take a cutting and make sure it includes at least 3 pairs of buds. Cut at the node in a slanted way.
- Prepare a propagation bed with a sterile medium like coarse sand.
- Dip the moistened cutting end in rooting medium and plant deep enough into the sand that 2 pairs of buds are covered.
- Keep the propagation bed moistened with automatic misters or water and cover with plastic like a greenhouse.
You can also sow redosier dogwood seeds with a high chance of success.
If you have plants already, it’s all about harvesting their fruits in the fall and extracting the seeds.
If you don’t have access to redosier nearby, you can always order them online.
You can order redosier dogwood seeds online below:
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Note: Keep in mind these might not have been stratified properly, to increase your odds of success, stratify them yourself.
Cold Stratification Method:
- First, place the seeds in a ziplock bag with sand, moisten, tag the bag with the date and name.
- Then, place them into your freezer for 60 days.
- Next, take them out of the freezer, and put the seeds in room temperature water for 24 hours.
- Finally place them into your refrigerator, back into sand or soil for another 30 days.
They might start to germinate in your refrigerator, but once you’ve reached your 30 days, take them out and place them in a well-lit area.
Good ventilation is also always important for strong seedling growth. It will prevent rotting and strengthen their stems.
How to Ready Redosier Dogwood For Sale
The redosier dogwood cuttings will look like twigs even when you got them to root.
You can try to put one twig per pot but it might take some time to turn into a bush. To hasten the process, you can put more than one rooted cutting into a pot to make a fuller plant.
Trim the main stem to encourage new branch growth and favor more of a bush shape.
Pot them up in a well-drained, organic potting mix, place them in full sun, and keep them sufficiently moist and they will thrive!
Redosier dogwood bushes can grow as high as 9 feet in height and as wide as 12 feet in spread.
Still trying to figure out how to start your plant nursery? Check out our plant nursery guide here.