Rent Shop Volunteer Join

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions

Please forgive us, but Mr. Smarty Plants has been overwhelmed by a flood of mail and must take a break for awhile to catch up. We hope to be accepting new questions again soon. Thank you!

Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Friday - October 26, 2007

From: Coquitlam, BC
Region: Canada
Topic: Trees
Title: Advice on planting Korean dogwood (Cornus kousa) in Vancouver, BC
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

I live in the Vancouver, BC - Pacific Northwest area and the front of our yard faces south to southwest. If I were to plant a tree other than an evergreen, would the Korean Dogwood thrive in this area of the country? Also, the neighbour's cedar hedge divides our properties - what small shrubs or plants would thrive with this cedar hedge?

ANSWER:

Vancouver is listed in Plant Hardiness Zone 6-7 and the Universtiy of North Carolina lists Cornus kousa (Korean dogwood) as being suitable for Zones 5-8. As its name implies, Korean dogwood is native to Asia, not North America. Although it would probably survive in Vancouver, perhaps you might consider planting a North American native, Cornus nuttallii (Pacific dogwood). It looks very similar to the Korean dogwood and occurs naturally in British Columbia and the Pacific Northwest. You can see a maps showing the distribution of C. kousa and the distribution of C. nuttalli and see that the native species is more widespread in the Vancouver area.

You can do your own search for suitable plants for your area in the Native Plant Database using the "Combination Search" option and choosing your own criteria for plants but, here are some suggestions for small shrubs that should do well near the cedar hedge:

Arctostaphylos uva-ursi (kinnikinnick)

Dasiphora fruticosa ssp. floribunda (shrubby cinquefoil)

Empetrum nigrum (black crowberry)

Gaultheria shallon (salal)

Mahonia aquifolium (hollyleaved barberry)

Rosa acicularis (prickly rose)

Vaccinium vitis-idaea (lingonberry)


Cornus nuttallii

Arctostaphylos uva-ursi

Dasiphora fruticosa ssp. floribunda

Empetrum nigrum

Gaultheria shallon

Mahonia aquifolium

Rosa acicularis

Vaccinium vitis-idaea


 

More Trees Questions

Failure to thrive of potted blue-green cypress
July 26, 2008 - I received a small 14" potted blue-green cypress for Christmas 2007. Kept it in a bright window, not direct sun. It was doing great until two weeks ago when it started turning brown from the center. ...
view the full question and answer

Differentiating between red oak, Shumard oak and American sycamore
February 05, 2006 - I have a few trees growing in an arroyo and I'm pretty certain that they are either red oak, shumard red oak, or Texas sycamore. The trees are deciduous and have a scaled grey bark which becomes lig...
view the full question and answer

Box elder beetles in Austin TX
February 02, 2012 - We have an large infestation of box elder beetles. They are crawling all over the yard and sometimes on the outside of the house. When you walk in the yard a cloud of them rises up and fills the air. ...
view the full question and answer

Bracket fungus on live oaks
October 04, 2007 - I live in Cedar Park and the house we just bought has 4 native live oaks growing in the front yard. On two of the live oaks there are bracket fungi growing at their base. Each tree just produced two n...
view the full question and answer

Cherry trees in the North Texas area
April 21, 2009 - Will cherry trees grow well in the North Texas area?
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.