Red-Osier Dogwood is a many stemmed deciduous shrub that grows 1-4 m tall. It is easily spotted as the young stems are generally bright red. These shrubs have sharp pointed leaves that grow opposite with prominent veins. Red-Osier Dogwood is a very attractive shrub that grows in a variety of conditions, particularly enjoying wet conditions.
|Height and Spread
||1 – 4 m tall
||3 – 5 m wide in spread.
||Small white to greenish coloured flowers that grow at the end of stems.
||Generally in early May to June.
||Seeds from the fruit appear in late summer, propagation is frequently done through cuttings. See propagation below.
|Light and Water
||Able to grow in a wide variety of light conditions.
||Grows best in wet conditions, although can be found growing less frequently in drier zones.
||Although dogwood berries are very bitter, they have been used in combination with other berries as a food source or on their own as a mouthwash. The inner bark was also boiled and applied to poultices for swelling and to help with pain. The most common use for Red-Osier Dogwood is the branches used as fish traps, poles, or for sweat houses.
||Red-Osier Dogwood is a very important browsing food for Moose in winter. It also provides bird habitat in its thick foliage and the berries are eaten by a variety of birds and insects.
||Red-Osier Dogwood can be used ornamentally with its striking red stems, distinct leaves, and white coloured flowers and berries.
||Red-Osier Dogwood are one of the most important shrubs in south interior ecosystems. The word Osier derives from a french word meaning river bed, while dogwood appears to derive from dag, meaning skewer.
||Red-Osier Dogwood is easily propagated through cuttings. It can also be propagated by seed, though with less success and taking much longer as seeds generally take 1-2 years to germinate.