Friday, July 11, 2008

Cornus Kousa 'Wolf Eyes'

Cornus kousa 'Wolf Eyes' is a wonderful dogwood. The Cornus floridus, native dogwoods are not doing well in my landscape and I had read where the Cornus kousas are the way to go. These little trees are said to be resistant to anthracnose, a dogwood related fungal disease, and also said to be drought tolerant. I just knew I had to have one to replace the sad and sick and dying native dogwoods in my landscape.

At last year's Nashville Lawn and Garden show I found not only a Cornus kousa, but a 'Wolf Eyes' cultivar. Little did I know at the time how much I would love this little tree. It did not bloom last year due to being newly planted. It had not yet leafed out when the freeze happened since it is slow to leaf out, so it was safe. I occasionally watered it last summer, but not because it was droopy or stressed. No, I watered it only because it was newly planted. I like to make sure plants in the garden that have been in the garden less than one year, have a good start on life by watering them during their first year.

This dogwood bloomed wonderfully this year. You could not see the blooms because they blended in with the white foliage. The foliage is actually variegated but appears to be frosted from a distance. It literally glows. I planted this tree in a visible place anchoring a backyard center garden. This tree is surrounded by other small shrubs, trees and perennials, but it still holds its own and is the most visible plant from my kitchen window. The view kind of gives me an incentive to stand there more often and wash dishes.

Several master gardeners purchased this cultivar at the Shadow Nursery on a recent trip. I hope they enjoy theirs as much as I have enjoyed mine. It is a lovely plant.

in the garden...


  1. What a beautiful little tree. It really stands out in the garden. I wonder if it would grow in Fl.!!! Does it prefer shade or sun?
    Thanks Tina for the info. As always your post are very informative.

  2. What a lovely little dogwood tree! I need to add more ornamental trees to my garden. I've always admired dogwoods. Great post and picture of your new addition.

  3. Good morning Lola and Perennial. Tina is going to be busy for a bit with school paper, test and Mr. Fixit is on vacation so I will be jumping in here a bit more to make up for her absence. I am not sure about this Dogwood Lola but do know that all my dogwoods that are in the sun bloom more then the dogwoods in the shade. But I really dont know the answer to your question. You may have to keep that one on hold for the Botanical lady Tina to pop back in here. LOL

    Yes Perennial Gardner, dogwoods do add a special touch to any garden so I recommend you get one if you dont already have a few. They give off such a Welcome in the Spring!

  4. Hi guys, What a pretty little tree, most likely to cold up here! Got my mail back! Yah! Numbers changed in the configure, ugh! 96 messages! Some from 7/1! Anyway, all better now.
    Dogwood is soooo pretty but I never know where to plant them, I always select a spot alone.

  5. That's a lovely little dogwood. How tall does it get?

  6. I miss the dogwoods (I lived in Alabama and Tennessee a while ago). I can grow the pagoda dogwood here in Il, but not the kousa.

    Wolf Eyes is striking, I like the white foliage. Wish I could grow it. What a beautiful contrast it would be against my spruce trees.

  7. Golly it is a pretty little tree but when I first looked at the pic I saw the crane and thought, "OH my goodness, is'nt that something, Skeeter has a crane just like Tina's". But then I thought it looked like Tina's yard so scrolled down to see who had posted. For some reason I jumped ahead a day and thought you were posting today but then realized it is tomorrow.

  8. This comment has been removed by the author.

  9. Oh darn it, I am stuttering and it won't delete for me.

  10. Like a litle kid, it made a liar outta me and deleted.

  11. Wolf eyes! What an odd name for a dogwood. Then again I'd never guess that bananas could grow in Tennessee either.

  12. Tina,

    Very nice tree and look at all that wonderful leaf mold and compost in the garden!


  13. Hello Dawn, I am happy you got your email back up and working! I would be so lost without my email.

    Rose, The wolf eye is a slow grower but can reach the height of 20 feet.

    Rose & Lilacs, White blossoms against a green background would make for a great color combination!

    Jean, You are too funny! I thought I was the only one that got my days mixed up! LOL. Tina has several postings scheduled to go so with my few extras, there will be a new posting each day. And I think it is nice to feel like a kid again, well, at times dont you? LOL...

    Sarah, I also think that wolf eyes is a strange name for a tree. Some times you must wonder how do they come up those names..?..

    Gail, you know Tina will have a ton of compost on her Gardens! She preaches Compost at times and even named a kitten after it! LOL...

    Speaking of which, Compost kitty has found a foster home! That is one step closer to a new Forever Home!

  14. Dawn I am so glad you got your mail straightened out.

    Hi Sarah, Wolf Eyes is a strange name for any plant I think, wonder where they came up with it. Surprised to see you on here today as is'nt it tomorrow that you leave? Now it is just about Sat. across the pond. Have a good trip and will look for your posts from the great state of Maine!!! Have fun in NYC.

    Oh my grandaughter will be disapointed that Compost is in a foster home. She was hoping he/she could make it to Maine sometime. She is a cutie so I was also hoping for that but I am glad Tina found a place for it, even if it is just a foster home. If someone cares enought to foster it, I am sure they will find a good home for the fur baby.

  15. Hi Skeeter/Tina, this is a lovely thing, I have only seen it is catalogs, not in a garden setting. I think the name has to do with the yellow slanting eyes of a wolf being similar to the yellow markings on the leaves. Wayside had it a few years ago as the cover beauty. Our native dogwoods are so far doing okay, but they get water in the drought as they are in the beds that get extra care. My neighbors Mae and Mickey have several kousas replacing dead natives. They are lovely, blooming later than the c. floridas. Waiting patiently for the butterfly post.

  16. Jean, granddaughter will be happy that Compost has a good foster home. Poor little thing only wants a good lap to lie in...

    Hi Frances!
    It is a pretty tree even without the blossoms dont ya think? Our dogwoods are doing well even with this drought. The little one I posted about that we took from the Jaws of Death, AKA the deer, has died at the top but the bottom is still alive and looking well. So for now, we will leave the dead part as is and see what happens.

    I will have to go in and edit the butterfly posting. After mowing the grass today I sat in the swing by the butterfly island and spotted a new butterfly so to snapping with the camera I went! Bugs were eating me up alive since I had stirred them up with mowing. I had to come inside and spray myself then get back to snapping! I took 165 pictures to capture only a few but well worth my efforts... Stay tuned!

  17. I love dogwoods. If we drive out into the more rural areas around here, we see them all in the woods. We actually dug up one and took it home and planted it. It did fine along with the river birch we dug that day, growing along the river. Someone is enjoying them now though. We moved from that first little house, a long time ago.

  18. Hi Skeeter/Tina --I had to trim some branches today from my dogwood. I hope I did okay with that?? I probably should've asked here first but my lawnmower was getting hung up on the lower branches and I wanted to fix that. So, do you think it's going to be okay that I trimmed a few bottom branches? Don't worry Tina I didn't scapel it:) That is great news that Compost found a foster home --we've had some busy days here but hopefully things will wind down soon. My boy 2 will be home tomorrow from camp and then we have a birthday party to go to --fun-fun, hahaha. The deck is finished being painted --looks good --it really is the same as before but looks more refreshed. The pressure washing of the pergola was the biggest deal --really made a huge difference --looked like new afterwards. We had some great rainstorms this week so the yard looks green and I mowed it:) I don't like to mow it when it is dry --it looks ugly, hahaha. The rain perked it up --tonight we found a bunch of Skink eggs --the mom ran off --so the kids and I will put them in a glass jar with some dirt and hope for the best. I'm sure it didn't help with Sidekick trying to catch her --this will be an interesting project that the kiddos will get to see. We have to do a bit of research on how to feed them, what temperature etc. If all else fails maybe we can find another Skink to put them by? Have a great weekend everyone! Ciao

  19. Jean, glad to hear you'll keep reading back in Maine. I'm leaving our house in Oxford today and shouldn't be visiting blogs. I'll be several days in journey visiting friends and family on the way home. Time to pack!

  20. Eve, that is so sad to leave that tree behind. I want to get back to TN so badly to be with my family but it will be very difficult to leave all my hard work in the yard behind. Not to mention my kitty that rest below the earth under the shade tree! If only I could take it all with me. But not leaving any time soon so I will continue to make this place look the best I can for the next person! LOL...

    Anonymous, I am sure your dogwood will be fine. It should have the proper amount of time to heal before winter sets in. Winter? What is that? LOL... Boy 2 was gone to camp a long time. How did you manage without him? Must have been a bit of a void in the house. Hope he had a great time learning new things and maybe getting a new friend along the way! Glad you can finally use your deck. Our pressure washer is like waving a magic wand! Love the results we get from it. Just dont like the sealing part with a paint brush afterwards. Argggg.... So now you are taking up raising Skinks? I bet you ask yourself, how you get into these things. Hey if this does not work out, you can have Skink Caviar for dinner! LOL...

    Hello Sarah, you have a long journey ahead of you. I wish you safe uneventful travels. Enjoy yourself and come back here to see us soon...