Cornus sericea - syn. Cornus stolonifera

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Butterfly FriendlyRain GardenPart Shade
syn. Cornus stolonifera
Cornus sericea

An easy to grow shrub with 4-season interest. Fragrant, white flowers bloom in spring and early summer providing pollen and nectar for butterflies, honeybees and other beneficial insects. The blooms are followed by attractive white berries atop bright red stems. These nutritious berries are eaten by over 40 different birds and other small mammals. The leaves turn the color of cabernet before dropping to reveal the gorgeous red stems. They provide so much winter interest, especially when backed by a fresh coating of winter snow. They are great for holiday decorating indoors too. 


  • Fragrant, white flowers attract butterflies and native bees
  • Nutritious berries are a great food source for songbirds
  • A favorite nesting place for American goldfinches
  • Waterfowl find food, shelter and nesting in the dense branches
  • Tolerates a wide range of conditions, including wet soils
  • Red branches are great for holiday decorating!

Native Range

Found along river banks, lake shores, wooded or open, wet areas.


Other native shrubs with high-fat berries to support migrating birds:

  • Northern bayberry (Morella [Myrica] pensylvanica) 50.3 percent fat
  • Southern arrowwood (Viburnum dentatum) 41.3 percent fat
  • Gray dogwood (Cornus racemosa) 39.9 percent fat
  • Northern spicebush (Lindera benzoin) 33.2 percent fat
  • American burning bush (Euonymus atropurpurea) 31.2 percent fat
  • Virginia creeper (Parthenocissus quinquefolia) 23.6 percent fat




    Prefers moist, well-drained soil in full sun to part shade but is quite adaptable. In order to keep the deep red stem color, cut the shrub back every few years to 6-8” in early spring. Other than that your dogwood doesn’t require too much care.


    Mature Size: 7-9ft. Tall x 7-9ft. Wide

    Hardiness Zone: 2-7

    Sun Exposure: Full sun to part shade

    Coming Soon!

      American Beauties Offer Solution Based Plant Collections to Help you Choose

      Quick Tips for Choosing Plants:

      • Planting a variety of native trees, shrubs, perennials and vines increases biodiversity and gives wildlife a source for food, cover and nesting
      • Choose a mixture of deciduous and evergreen trees so birds and other wildlife will always be able to find shelter
      • Plant trees and large shrubs where they will block winter winds from the house and shade it in summer, that will save energy and lower your carbon footprint
      • Try your best to buy plants that were grown locally, your independent garden center will be your best bet
      • Think about ultimate height and width of the plant you choose, make sure it will fit the space you have for it when it's reached maturity
      • Plant nectar plants in groups, to attract butterflies and other beneficial insects more easily
      • Ask for help if you need it. Most garden centers either have a landscape designer on staff or they can give you a reference of a designer that is adept at native plant wildlife gardening. There will be upfront costs but they are small when compared to having to redo a landscape that wasn't what you really wanted

      Our Plant Tags Hold the Secrets to Success

      Choosing the right plants for your garden can seem like a daunting task but we’re here to help. Our horticulturists have spent a considerable amount of time researching and writing our beautiful, American Beauties plant tags to help you be successful. First of all, when you see an American Beauties branded pot at your garden center you can be confident that the plant is native to your area and a responsible choice. 

      When you look at our tag you’ll find information about the plants natural habitat. That will give you a clue to how it will work in your backyard. For instance if the plant is naturally founded and moist, shade and you have full sun, it’s not the plant for you. The “Features” section gives you an overview or plant description so you’ll know what to expect. While the “Benefits” section talks about the plants strong suits and how the plant will benefit wildlife. 

      A Special Note About Exposure

      Full sun: Prefers six or more hours of direct sunshine a day
      Partial shade: Thrives in three to six hours of daily sunshine
      Shade: Generally does well with less than three hours of sun per day. Having said that even shade loving plants will struggle in extremely deep shade.


      Best Plants for Bees - Double sided printout for download

      Best Plants for Butterflies - Double sided printout for download

      Best Plants for Birds - Double sided printout for download