Kousa Dogwood only has 3 flowers

Reply

  #1  
Old 06-08-05, 11:43 AM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: May 2002
Location: Jackson, NJ
Posts: 437
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Kousa Dogwood only has 3 flowers

I planted a Kousa Dogwood 2 summers ago, it's about 15' tall. That summer was rather dry and some of the leaves were starting to dry up around the edges. Last spring there were only 2 or 3 flowers near the top. Last summer the tree looked a little wilted at times. This year the tree looks the healthiest it's ever looked, nice big green lush leaves, but only 3 flowers. I see other Kousas in the area which are LOADED with flowers. Is it from too much dryness last year? Not pruning properly? Only pruning I did last fall was clip the dead stuff off.

Thanks.

Dave
 
Sponsored Links
  #2  
Old 06-09-05, 07:03 PM
Member
Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: USA
Posts: 15,834
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Kousa dogwoods require partial sun and shade and are best planted at the edge of a wooded area so they can get some full sun. Kousa does best in Growing Zones 5 to 8 and has a long blooming time (into June) and tends to be resistant to pests and diseases that affect native flowering dogwood species. Dogwoods prefer moist, well-drained, acidic (5.5 to 6.0 pH) soil that is high in organic matter. While all dogwoods do well in full sun or partial shade, the flowering native dogwood prefers partial shade. Dogwoods that receive good air circulation tend to dry out quickly after rainfall and are less subject to disease.

Dogwoods are not very tolerant of extremely wet or dry soils, and should be watered deeply (1 to 2 inches per week) during dry periods, especially if located in the sun. Watering should always be done in the morning to reduce risk of disease. A heavy layer of mulch in a large area beneath tree canopy will conserve moisture and prevent damage from lawn mowers and trimmers. Such damage tends to introduce disease and shorten the life of dogwoods.
You should have a 2- to 3-inch deep ring of mulch at least 8 to 10 feet in diameter around the tree. Never allow mulch to make contact with tree trunk. Fertilize in late spring (after new leaves emerge) up to early fall. Avoid fertilizing trees stressed by drought during the summer months.

Kousas tend to be more resistant to disease than flowering native dogwoods which are susceptible to many diseases and pests. The dogwood borer will attack newly planted trees, trees in poor health and those damaged by mowers and trimmers. Dogwoods are also subject to midges which cause those galls or swellings on twigs, scale and leaf miner. They can get crown canker, spot antracnose, powdery mildew and leaf spot. Dogwood antracnose has killed many dogwoods in New England and the Mid Atlantic. It is most severe where elevation is greater than 2000 feet. At lower elevations, it tends to attack dogwoods growing in cool, moist, shady locations. This fungus can't survive the heat of the Piedmont and the south where the spring show of dogwood blossoms mixed with the bloom of the red bud trees is an awesome sight to behold.

Kousa dogwoods are moderate growers and will grow up to be 20-25 feet tall and wide. This means it should be planted in a space to accommodate its size at matuirity. New trees tend to stay busy growing upright, but they do a wide spread as they mature and send out horizontal branches that droop. Their branching pattern makes them particularly attractive in a landscape. They tend to average growing 10 feet in 15 years.

Kousa flowers after leaves emerge in spring and bloom later than native flowering dogwoods. Creamy white bloomms turn pink with age. Pinkish-red to red fruit appears in September and October. They look like raspberries and are edible but somewhat mealy. Fruit could be messy on sidewalks and driveways. Fall leaves are purple to red.

Moist, fertile loamy, but well-drained soil is a must. Kousa absolutely will not tolerate drought and needs deep irrigation during hot, dry spells. If in the South, afternoon shade is welcome, but it can adapt to full sun. It is shallow rooted and needs lots of room for roots to spread out. Mulching is also a must to conserve moisture and to keep the mowers and trimmers away from trunk. Just don't let the mulch touch the bark where it can trap moisture, cause decay and disease.

Pruning? Prune off root suckers and remove the smaller trunk twigs. If you have to mow beneath canopy, gradually raise height of lowest branches over a period of two or three years. Pruning of dogwoods should emphasize horizontal lateral branches, meaning vertical shoots need to be kept pruned out to prevent crowding of canopy. This will also allow more air and light penetration into canopy and prevent overcrowding.
 
  #3  
Old 06-10-05, 05:16 AM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: May 2002
Location: Jackson, NJ
Posts: 437
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Thanks, but I don't think my question was still answered. My kousa is planted in front of the house (eastern exposure) on the lawn side of the walkway to the front door, so it gets full sun most of the day, shade in late afternoon. soil ph is around 6, and tree is well drained. gets water from sprinklers every other day in the early morning. On dry spells I will give it an extra bucket or two of water. I do not have mulch around the tree, I have 3/4" red stone. I guess I could re-scape this area to remove stone and add mulch if this will help keep tree from drying out too much. Will tree produce more flowers as it matures?
 

Last edited by twelvepole; 06-18-05 at 01:19 PM.
  #4  
Old 06-10-05, 10:57 AM
Member
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: Taylors, SC
Posts: 9,483
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Dogwoods do poorly in drought. They perform better when kept uniformly watered. The natural site for one is under other, larger trees. This helps maintain a more even amount of moisture. Remove the rocks and replace them with an organic mulch.
 
  #5  
Old 06-18-05, 09:21 AM
davidp44
Visiting Guest
Posts: n/a
Kousa dogwood not flowering

Our kousa dogwood has never flowered. I don't remember exactly when we planted it, but I think it was about 5 years ago. It looks extremely healthy -
very nice folliage, nice shape, grows every year. What would make it not flower? Does it take a certain number of years? Do we need to fertilize it?
Any insights would be appreciated. Thanks.
 
  #6  
Old 06-18-05, 01:18 PM
Member
Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: USA
Posts: 15,834
Upvotes: 0
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
It is not uncommon for Kousa's to take their time blooming. For instance, a gardener planted a 12-year-old Kousa. It produced two or three blooms for eight years and then started blooming like crazy.

You can fertilize with Camellia-Rhododendron food, acid based fertilizer to stimulate blooming. In colder climates, you can use a 0-10-10 fertilizer in early to mid-Summer to help induce flower bud formation. Because Kousa's are grown some place else, it takes them time to adjust to your growing conditions. Kousa's seem to particularly aware of weather and climatic conditions and failure to bloom is most often due to environmental factors.

Kousas prefer moist, fertile, loamy, well-drained soil but they tend to be more adaptable to soil conditions than other flower dogwoods. Kousas do not tolerate drought and need deep watering during hot, dry spells. In the South, kousas need afternoon sun but can grow in full sun. Kousas have large root systems, so they need lots of room for expansion. There should be mulch beneath canopy to conserve moisture and to keep mowers and weedeaters away from bark.
 
Reply

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Display Modes
 
Ask a Question
Question Title:
Description:
Your question will be posted in: