amzn_assoc_title = "Shop Related Products"; Leaves turn red or purple before dropping in October. Elderberries are ripening this time of year where we live, so if you have any interest in harvesting these berries, it is as good a time as ever to nail down your elderberry identification skills. Do remember–if you are not sure what a plant is, first work hard to figure it out (because maybe you’ll learn something new). And finally, just for contrast, Black Elderberry: So, to recap, pay close attention to these distinguishing features: I hope at least some of this information is helpful. This dogwood is often found in swampy areas. A great 4-season plant for naturalizing, in mass, and in shrub borders, especially in moist sites. The most conspicuous distinguishing features between these Dogwoods and the Elderberry, however, are in the leaves and the fruits. If you observe carefully and thoroughly, and especially if you begin to learn the vocabulary of kingdom Plantae and attach deeper meaning to your sensory experience of these objects, you will gradually become more accurate in plant identification. Silk Dogwood is also known as Silky Cornel and Swamp Dogwood. Click to see full answer. In USDA zones 5 through 8, kousa dogwood (Cornus kousa) bears showy, pinkish-red fruits that resemble raspberries. More than 45 types of songbirds and game birds have been documented consuming the fatty berries in the fall. Hello there, As kousa dogwood gets older the lower bark peels and creates a unique pattern similar to sycamore tree bark. Photos may not be used without permission. I’ve followed the stem down and it does appear to be bark-like with no nubs. Certainly, you can send a couple of pictures to theyrenotourgoats at gmail dot com. but I’m new to this and your article help me and my husband a lot. Or even if you know a good plant ID FB group to direct me to? They look almost identical to silky dogwood when the fruits ripen? I always said it tastes like a cross between a mango and pumpkin. Silky Dogwood and Redosier Dogwood leaves are simple. Dogwood berries can be bright red, white, dark blue, or even a combination of dark blue and white, as with the silky dogwood. Mature height generally ranges from 6 to 12 feet. Red berries are certainly edible, but they are not fully ripe. Read on to find out how to distinguish these two look-alike plants from each other. I would start by checking other features besides the berries. You can identify a dogwood by looking for smooth-edged leaves with veins that curve parallel to the margins (edges). As these berries have a slightly sour taste, their consumption can cause irritation in the gastrointestinal tract. © 2017. The dogwoods’ cymes are smaller and less dense than the elderberry’s  (obviously the presence of berries or drupes will depend on fertilization), but the dogwoods’ drupes are larger than elderberries. Found growing in the wildlife habitat created on the grounds of the local middle school. Almost all transplants work well. amzn_assoc_default_search_phrase = "elderberries"; amzn_assoc_ad_type = "smart"; The taste is very good and unique for a temperate climate fruit. Your email address will not be published. They both tend to grow in wet locations–though both are very tolerant plants–so you may even find them growing together (as we did recently). Elderberry Identification and Foraging Tips | HealthyGreenSavvy. So, in simplist terms, is the difference in the leaves? I am not sure if I have elderberry in my backyard, or if it is something else? Dogwood berries are in toxicity class III category, meaning, they are slightly toxic for dogs and cats. It does become more difficult to ID without leaves on the plant, but a few pictures of the overall plant, the bark, the berries, and the stems would help. After a quick search, it seems that the warmest coastal RI zone you could be in is 7b. Should I plant in the back or along the woods etc. Here’s a close-up of its lovely flower cyme (that’s the name of that cluster pattern): For comparison, here is the Black Elderberry bloom: Certainly these flower clusters look similar. Read on for additional silky dogwood information. Last fall I spotted Elderberry and I’ve been following the plant all year. Hello & welcome, I am Dr. B, a licensed veterinarian and I would like to help you today. I had heard you have to be careful because you might think it’s elderberries and it’s not. Your email address will not be published. Season: Late Summer & Early Fall Urban, Rural or Both: Both Yew Berries (Taxus baccata), Taxus.The red flesh of the ripe berries is safe and sweet tasting, though without any great flavor, but the seed in the center of the red berry is deadly poisonous, and the rest of the tree is deadly poisonous. Thank you so much! Many berries are commonly available in grocery stores, but other, equally delicious ones are abundant in the wild. To herbalists, however, it is distinguished for its bright and edible dogwood fruit, commonly referred to as Kousa berries, cornus fruit and asiatic cornelian cherry. I’ll be on the lookout! Delcore's Wiki is a FANDOM Lifestyle Community. I just transplanted three baby trees of this species from my neighbor's sidewalk to a planter to grow inside this year. Silky dogwood (Cornus amomum) is a medium-sized, native in the dogwood family (Cornaceae), and its blue berries are savored by many songbirds. Your pet is likely to vomit or suffer from diarrhea due to this GI irritation. The fruit is eaten by game birds, and is especially important as a source of food for migrating songbirds. Pingback: Elderberry Identification and Foraging Tips | HealthyGreenSavvy. Although the taste doesn't rival that of its lookalike, the berries are edible. amzn_assoc_region = "US"; Pingback: How to Grow a Jelly Garden | Tenth Acre Farm. They have pits, along with a non all that sweet taste. amzn_assoc_tracking_id = "threnoougo-20"; We’ve been away from the blog for a bit. The fruits are about the size of a strawberry but round. It takes probably up to 50 flowers to make up the compound flower we see. Flowers may or may not feature large bracts like those of the flowering dogwood (Cornus florida). Also known as Japanese dogwood, Chinese dogwood, and Korean dogwood, Kousa Dogwood is native to multiple regions in Asia and has become a highly popular ornamental tree in the United States. Benefits of Elderflower & 25 Recipes! Required fields are marked *. See the following images. Observe the following photo; Redosier in the foreground, Elderberry in the background (just a few of the elderberries are starting to turn purple): Finally, a note about the color of the dogwood fruit: Redosier fruit turns whitish when ripe while Silky Dogwood’s is blueish. Although the taste doesn't rival that of its lookalike, the berries are edible. amzn_assoc_ad_mode = "search"; Tree With Dogwoodlike Blooms That Produce Berries in Fall. The flowers mature to berry-like drupes that begin white but slowly transform to a lovely blue for the fall. Thanks! Black Elderberry (sambucus nigra) shrubs are pretty distinctive, but if you are not paying close attention to what you are seeing, mistaking other plants for them is not impossible. be able to email you a picture to peek at with your more knowledgeable eyes? We were out there with my phone checking that plant to see how the leave look. A dragonfly lands on a kousa dogwood bud. If you are just seeing a handful of berries now, I would guess that they are not elderberries at this point as elderberries have likely long since ripened and disappeared from the plant by now. I acquired this based on the description in the Oikos catalog. Wold you please look at a few photos to help me identify this tree because I want to be fairly positive is an elder tree before I consider removing it. In USDA zones 5 through 8, kousa dogwood (Cornus kousa) bears showy, pinkish-red fruits that resemble raspberries. I also had planted a cutting from a big bush from my neighbors. The fruit ripens gradually, over a period of weeks, so this will be a graduated harvest. He describes the fruits as "oval, cherry-like, and fire-engine red with a single stone inside," and likens their taste to that of sour cherries. Make sure to use rooting hormone, it helps cuttings grow roots to continue to grow. No other sites, I’ve read have referenced dog woods. At certain stages of development, a couple plants in particular appear the closest of all to Elderberry: the Silky Dogwood (cornus amomum) and the Redosier (Red Osier) Dogwood (cornus sericea). Silky dogwood (Cornus amomum) is a medium-sized, native in the dogwood family (Cornaceae), and its blue berries are savored by many songbirds.More than 45 types of songbirds and game birds have been documented consuming the fatty berries in the fall. The berries fall off in fall when leaves do. Branches that dig back into the ground can grow roots, and become a new tree. So your article help. And finally, Black Elderberry (sambucus nigra): Let’s turn to the berries and drupes. We recently thought we spotted elderberries at a friend’s house- but Tim’s discerning eye second guessed our initial identification. Some trees may also bloom again in September. I know that elderberry grows in the wild in our area (coastal RI) but I’m a true novice at plant id. Excerpts may be used with credit and a clickable link back to the source. Flowers eventually in September become small blue berries, still in clusters. amzn_assoc_default_category = "All"; amzn_assoc_search_bar_position = "bottom"; On a day like today, in mid-May this exceptionally warm spring of 2012, I can pick a gallon of the berries in about an hour. At any rate, would it be overly assumptive to ask if I might ? Your post was perfect – I now know that I have a Redosier Dogwood. Now I have a plant growing along the property line that made flowers and all and Grows like a huge bush. Trees provide shade, fruits and oxygen, and they add visual interest to the landscape and attract birds and other animals. This page gave me a 99% confidence level. No one else I know forages. Send them along to theyrenotourgoats at gmail dot com and we’d be happy to take a look. The fruit from the Silky Dogwood (Cornus amomum) is not considered toxic to any species (dogs, people, livestock, birds, etc). Having done some research, because I’d really prefer avoiding Water Hemlock, I did learn some helpful ID information, not discluding this post. If dogwood berries were highly toxic or poisonous to humans or pets I would have heard something about it over my 30 years experience in the field. . Hi Rahel! Blue berries, still in cluster, maturing in September. In some species they appear in cone-like clusters but in others, as in the silky dogwood pictured, in flat umbels. So I’m gonna go see if it’s an elederberry. I've seen people eat dogwood berries before - never a large quantity - and none have experienced any problems. Thanks for asking your question! Propagation of this species is the easiest of any of the dogwoods. At least where we live, elderberries ripen to a rich deep purple well before the silky or redosier fruits ripen. The following is a “guest” post from my hubby- the guy who really knows his plants around here. Though there are conflicting reports as to the toxicity of the berries in regards to human consumption, they taste rather rancid and fleshy. All content is the property of They're Not Our Goats. The flowers are said to have similar properties. If you have any inquiries please contact us at theyrenotourgoats at gmail dot com. But he quickly adds that … I know that elderberry grows in the wild in our area (coastal RI) but I’m a true novice at plant id. When in doubt, we recommend watching a plant for an entire season to observe its development. Certainly! I’m so glad it was helpful! Herb: Silky Dogwood Latin name: Cornus amomum Synonyms: Cornus coerulea, Swida amomum Family: Cornaceae (Dogwood Family) Medicinal use of Silky Dogwood: The dried root-bark is antiperiodic, astringent, stimulant (mild), tonic. Silky dogwood often has about half its canopy of flowers, so still not like the flowering dogwood. I have started my first nature journal and was unsure as to what type of plant and berries I had so I could label it correctly. Hi Val- sorry for the delay! I received your email and I’m about to reply to it! Trees are native, but can still sometimes grow in weedy, but are not invasive. The leaves of elderberries should still be compound and toothed, while the leaves of dogwood should be simple and smooth edged. You have already seen this, the candy berries are the ones that taste good as soon as they're ripe, such as serviceberries, twinberries, Red-flowering Currant, Mahonia, Salal, huckleberries, red and blue elderberries and even Mountain Ash, Red-twig Dogwood and Pacific Yew. Pingback: 17 Elderflower Recipes for a Summertime Treat | Homestead Honey. Berries: The berries aren’t very tasty, and wildlife tend to leave them alone in the fall. Pingback: What is Elderflower? I always said it tastes like a cross between a mango and pumpkin. To complicate the trouble of precisely identifying Redosier Dogwood in contrast to the Silky Dogwood, Redosier is a variable species, which essentially means that its morphology is not always the same–different specimens can look different from each other. The thing is, we are experiencing a terrible infestation of box elder bugs that are living in the wood siding of my house and I cannot keep up with removing them and I refuse to poison then as it wouldn’t be safe for my kids,cats or chickens. Post was not sent - check your email addresses! The best way for me to tell would be if you sent along a few pictures to theyrenotourgoats@gmail.com. The taste can vary from tree to tree, so it is advisable to try a few before you strip the tree of its berries! The taste is very good and unique for a temperate climate fruit. Where the berries appear it is reddish, which visually seems to be consistent though I haven’t see this mentioned? Kousa Dogwood berries, botanically classified as Cornus kousa, grow on small, deciduous trees or shrubs belonging to the Cornaceae family. Here are 10 tasty wild berries to try — and 8 poisonous ones to avoid. The stem of Silky Dogwood has these markings on it, which are absent from Red Osier Dogwood (Cornus stolonifera) bark. Also known a swamp dogwood, silky dogwood is a mid-size shrub that grows wild along streams, ponds and other wetlands across much of the eastern half of the United States. Having said that, let’s return to the Silky Dogwood. The main thing that makes these Dogwoods more likely candidates for elderberry confusion than other look-alikes like Pokeberry and Water Hemlock is the fact that they too are shrubs of very similar proportions (from 6-10′ high) to elderberry. Thanks :)). Aside from the risk-factor of mistaking those plants for Elderberry (which has its own share of toxicity-risks), there is almost no reason to fear mistaking Water Hemlock or Pokeberry for Elderberry. Thank you! I started foraging 3 years ago. The entire flower/fruit stalk falls off. The dogwood leaves are smooth. I thought it would be interesting to have a fruit with fat in the pulp, like an avocado. amzn_assoc_search_bar = "true"; It tolerates wet swampy ground and less wet conditions too. Silky dogwood often has about half its canopy of flowers, so still not like the flowering dogwood. Also be aware of the color of the fruit (this is one of the best ways to discern whether you’re dealing with a silky or redosier, too). They also litter -- a lot. It says "Fruit has high amounts of calcium –excellent for good skeletal growth in wildlife and high amounts of fat energy." May I send a couple pictures. Bark is smooth. Take your favorite fandoms with you and never miss a beat. Flowers are fragrant. It is worth noting though that the subgenus of this plant species (Swida amomum) has been noted to be mildly toxic and cause stomach Berries are at their best when they ripen to a dark, purple-blue. Silky dogwood has simple, opposite leaves that turn a brownish-red color in the fall. This is very very helpful! Your Silky Dogwood has attractive greenish-white flower clusters that appear in flat-topped, 2.5-inch clusters in the spring. Elderberry leaf margins are toothed. They have pits, along with a non all that sweet taste. The kousa dogwood berries are unique in size and shape. Individual flowers are very tiny. Could I send you an image somehow? Also, you can compare the size of the berries and the shape of the cymes. For our purposes, though, that is not very important; we are trying to distinguish the Dogwoods from Elderberry, not so much from each other. My greatest challenge is that I’m just now seeing what may or may not be elderberries (just a handful) and there are no leaves for comparison. But that is not the only similarity they share (I’ll get to the differences in a moment). The silky dogwood, or Cornus amomum, is an ornamental shrub featuring flat white flowers that are unlike the showy blooms of the flowering dogwood.This deciduous plant grows in the United States as far south as Florida and up to Michigan, with specimens also found in Wisconsin, Tennessee, and Ohio. Silky Dogwood has pretty big showy white clustered flowers in early summer (June and sometimes early July). I ate a berry or two once and it was kind of grainy and not very tasty. Thank you. The fruits are about the size of a strawberry but round. Morthia from Hypothetical Hurricanes Wiki, https://delcores.fandom.com/wiki/Silky_Dogwood?oldid=1615. Silky dogwood (Cornus amomum) is named for the silky gray hairs that cover the undersid… Our common red-osier dogwood or kinnikinnick, best known for its bright red stems, bears whitish or bluish berries that Thoreau described as "part of the pendant jewelry of the season." So mine is still in the pot and I’m trying to figure out what I should do. Benefits of Elderflower & 25 Recipes! Progressing each year. Look at the Silky Dogwood for example: Clearly there are differences between them, but at least we are dealing with similar types of plants. It’s so pretty ask year round and I can see it from almost every room in my house. That’s another reason I look up to see what is good and which is bad. Sorry, your blog cannot share posts by email. Kousa Dogwood can be identified by 2 primary factors. At this stage they are sweet, plump, and juicy. Flowers eventually in September become small blue berries, still in clusters. Thank you! 18 thoughts on “ Distinguishing Elderberry from Silky and Redosier Dogwood ” Pingback: How to Grow a Jelly Garden | Tenth Acre Farm Danielle November 28, 2016 at 6:44 pm. The berries have a distinctive bumpy skin. Distinguishing Elderberry from Silky and Redosier Dogwood. They have red bark, and grey older bark, still having red streaks. In the home landscape, silky dogwood bushes work well in moist, naturalized areas and do a good job at stabilizing the soil in erosion-prone sites. Thank you SO much! Once I learned about hemlock, Queen Anne’s lace there is no comparison. Those two plants are markedly different from Elderberry in fairly obvious ways–I won’t go into them in detail now, but suffice it to say, when identifying a plant, don’t hinge your identification on only one feature (e.g. berries, drupes or flowers growing in cyme patterns). The primary edible part of the Kousa Dogwood is its red berries which are usually produced in abundance in late summer. Pay attention to the overall habit of the plant–the location, the time, duration, and color of the flowers (if any), whether it is woody or herbaceous, the pattern and color of the bark, a general sampling of the leaves–opposite, alternate, whorled–from many parts of the plant, the shape, margins, and vein structure of the leaves, the characteristics of the fruit, etc. Dogwood Fruit: Top 10 Health Benefits (Kousa Berries) A small tree native to Korea and other parts of Asia, the dogwood is popular as an ornamental tree to most. Birds lack a strong sense of taste, so they don’t seem to mind the dogwood berries. The Craft of Herbal Fermentation: A Course Re... How to Identify & Forage for Stinging Nettle, Strawberry-Honey Preserves (No Pectin or White Sugar), How to Grow a Jelly Garden | Tenth Acre Farm, 17 Elderflower Recipes for a Summertime Treat | Homestead Honey. Forest grown trees are less likely to grow like this, and grow more like a regular dogwood. Other dogwoods have clusters of small, creamy-white flowers. Absolutely a fantastic read. However, there is a slight possibility that there could be a few desiccated berries clinging on at this point. Berries are technically edible, but don't taste very good. This bush has a big rounded crown, and branches tend to arch back to the ground in open grown trees. About the size of cherries, the fruit starts out yellow and turns a rosy red color when ripe. Both cuttings survived. Silky dogwood is a large to medium-sized native shrub with creamy white spring flowers, dark green foliage, and reddish stems and burgundy fall color. The only other solution I have is to remove the tree, which there are two of but the one is my favorite part of my yard. I was given and elderberry and I assumed it grew like a big bush or tree and I was told it did but I didn’t know it had runners. If you can’t figure it out with reasonable confidence, then don’t eat it for now–you’ll probably get another opportunity in the future! Silky dogwood has simple, opposite leaves that turn a brownish-red color in the fall. Berries are technically edible, but don't taste very good. I belong to a plant ID group already, but they’re pretty persnickety and don’t seem very warm to newbies like myself. Notes: A dogwood with gorgeous blue berries. What about blue elderberry? The bark and the fruits. The berries appear in late summer. Not all of the 45 species of dogwood trees (Cornus spp.) What is Elderflower? One thing a very experienced backyard birder taught me is that there are "Broccoli" berries and "Candy" berries. The two groundcover species have flowers that are rather inconspicuous but appear magnificent framed by the surrounding large, petal-like bracts. You explained it so well and with the pictures to go with it help so much. Silky Dogwood Berries. After pollination, they produce a type of fruit known as a drupe. Note first the density and size of the cymes in both dogwoods as compared to the elderberry. Trees with Berries That Stain the Pavement. Oh I so enjoyed the read. Study the following images to note the differences between the Elderberry leaf on the left and the Redosier Dogwood leaves on the right: Observe also the following drawings of the Dogwoods and Elderberry courtesy of the USDA Plant Profiles. If you take the time to google “elderberry look-alikes,” your search results will likely include references to Water Hemlock and Pokeberry–the former deathly poisonous and the latter arguably poisonous if used improperly. You can also check with the local state extension office in your area! Elderberry leaves are compound. Large bushy dogwood tree. amzn_assoc_placement = "adunit0"; amzn_assoc_marketplace = "amazon"; Elderberry has the ratchet ridges in the leaves and the dogwood has smooth sided leaves? Thus, if you see ripe elderberries side by side with a dogwood, you should see that the dogwood fruits are still green. The primary edible part of the Kousa Dogwood is its red berries which are usually produced in abundance in late summer. Do you know what USDA hardiness zone you are in? We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites. Many species have edible fruit, though not all actually taste good. A period of weeks, so still not like the flowering dogwood your silky dogwood,. Your pet is likely to grow like this, and grey older bark, and branches tend to arch to. Shape what do silky dogwood berries taste like the 45 species of dogwood trees ( Cornus kousa ) bears showy pinkish-red... In toxicity class III category, meaning, they Produce a type of fruit known as a.... 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