‘Kintoki’ Japanese Cornel Is Perfect Fit for Small Urban Gardens


‘Kintoki’ summer foliage

It’s a dogwood and comes close to being a plant that offers four seasons of landsape beauty. Kintoki Japanese cornel (Cornus officinalis ‘Kintoki’) is a special semi-dwarf 10-12 foot tall dogwood which fits into most small gardens. Kintoki’s bright yellow flowers open in early March in the Southern Appalachian region (USDA zones 6 and 7).

Bloom season is almost 4- weeks long, and begins 3 – 4 weeks ahead of forsythia. A frigid winter’s evening does not hurt the blooms. The foliage exhibits a dark green polished finish and purplish fall foliage color does not occur is not until late November.

Japanese cornel grows in most soils as long as the drainage is good. Plant in a full sun to partial shade location where it’s easily visible from inside your home. When in bloom, March weather is often wild and changeable and gardeners can remain warmly huddled indoors.
In the fall attractive Kintoki’s multi-colored bark and bright edible drupe fruits offer autumn thru winter interest for humans, birds and other wildlife. Over the next 2-3 years, availability of Kintoki is likely to be limited to specialty nurseries selling in the internet marketplace.
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