Herb: Japanese Dogwood


Latin name: Cornus kousa


Synonyms: Benthamia kousa, Benthamidia japonica


Family: Cornaceae (Dogwood Family)



Edible parts of Japanese Dogwood:

Fruit - raw or cooked. Sweet and juicy, it is very nice in small quantities. Very seedy. The skin is rather tough and unpleasant, but the pulp is delicious with a custard-like texture, it is one of our favourite late summer fruits. The fruit is about 2cm in diameter. Young leaves - cooked.

Description of the plant:



Plant:
Deciduous
Tree

Height:
10 m
(33 feet)

Flovering:
June

Habitat of the herb:

Woods and scrub in the mountains of Sichuan. Valleys, shaded slopes, by streams and roadsides, in mixed, sparse, and dense woods at elevations of 400 - 2200 metres.

Other uses of Japanese Dogwood:

Wood - very hard and heavy. Used for mallets etc.

Propagation of the herb:

Seed - best sown as soon as it is ripe in a cold frame or in an outdoors seedbed if there is sufficient seed. The seed must be separated from the fruit flesh since this contains germination inhibitors. Stored seed should be cold stratified for 3 - 4 months and sown as early as possible in the year. Scarification may also help as may a period of warm stratification before the cold stratification. Germination, especially of stored seed, can be very slow, taking 18 months or more. Prick out the seedlings of cold-frame sown seeds into individual pots as soon as they are large enough to handle and grow the plants on for their first winter in a greenhouse, planting out in the spring after the last expected frosts. Cuttings of half-ripe side shoots, July/August in a frame. Cuttings of mature wood of the current year's growth, taken with a heel if possible, autumn in a cold frame. High percentage. Layering of new growth in June/July. Takes 9 months.

Cultivation of Japanese Dogwood:

Woods and scrub in the mountains of Sichuan. Valleys, shaded slopes, by streams and roadsides, in mixed, sparse, and dense woods at elevations of 400 - 2200 metres.

Medicinal use of the herb:

None known

Known hazards of Cornus kousa:

None known

Plant information taken from the Plants For A Future.