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The Dogwood is a small tree that is very beautiful when covered with white flowers in the spring. The tree blooms before or during emergence of the first leaves. After blooming the tree has very attractive foliage all summer. The true petals of dogwood blooms are very small and are located at the center of the bloom. The large cream colored "petals" are actually bracts.In the fall the leaves turn to a dark red color that is pretty also. For this reason the Dogwood is used for landscaping around homes. Unfortunately, the tree is susceptible to a disease called Anthracose. This is a fungus that is able to damage trees that do not get morning sun to dry dew. There is a related species from China called the Kousa Dogwood that supposedly is not affected by Anthracnose. Although the Dogwood is not normally a big tree, there is one very large one at the Huntsville Botanical Garden. Several years ago this tree was removed from a construction site and moved to it's present location at the garden.
Dogwood trees are understory trees that are scattered throughout wooded areas. They are also a frequently used landscape tree. Most urban areas have spectacular shows during dogwood blooming season.
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