Cornus alba 'Argenteo-marginata'

Argenteo-marginata Tatarian dogwood

CODE: 03A-0003
ZONE: 3a
PRICE: $10.00
POT SIZE: 4.5"sq x 5.0", 1004 ml

Sometimes the old-fashioned varieties are still the best, as proven by a five-year study of shrub dogwoods at Longwood Gardens published in 2005. Consistently scoring in the top 10% for winter, spring, summer, and fall appeal, 'Argenteo-marginata' came out as the highest-scoring cultivar overall against 32 other selections.

What makes this dogwood so great?

The most obvious characteristic is the variegated leaves -- dusky gray-green in the center, they're surrounded by a thick creamy-white margin that makes this plant glow in the landscape.

The winter interest is spectacular as well. No longer hidden by the foliage, vibrant carmine-red stems form vertical stripes in the landscape, intensifying in color as the season progresses . New growth tends to have the best coloration, so prune 1/3 of the old wood out every year or cut to within 6-12" of the ground in late winter just before the plant breaks bud.

I love this dogwood planted in front of large, red-foliaged plants like Acer palmatum 'Bloodgood' or against evergreen backdrops. It in turn works quite well as a backdrop for dark-foliaged plants like Sedum 'Purple Emperor'.

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Gary J. Kling