The Empress of China Dogwood from the Southern Living Plant Collection is guaranteed to bring a delicate elegance to any landscape! Creamy white blossoms emerge in early summer and engulf nearly the entire tree. This breathtaking display is truly a sight to behold on a full-grown plant and will transform your landscape from Spring to Summer. Afterward, the Empress of China’s blossoms develop into translucent, strawberry-like fruit (inedible). This year-round interest means that there’s possibly no better specimen plant for a partial shade garden.
Unlike traditional dogwoods, this selection is evergreen and retains its attractive light green leaves all year long! In addition, this dogwood features a vigorous growth habit that helps it achieve new heights in your landscape.
This variety works best as a specimen or a privacy screen due to its large size. It reaches 15-18 feet high and 13-15 feet wide at maturity.
Empress of China Dogwood Care
This Dogwood grows in Zones 6-9. Additionally, once well-established, it should be able to withstand temperatures down to -10 degrees Fahrenheit. We recommend providing some winter protection for the first couple of years. Young plants can still be damaged by particularly hard freezes and this will help to ensure their survival.
Plant the Empress of China in Full Sun to Part Shade, and in well-drained garden soil. For added soil fertility, mix in compost or composted manure. If planted in Full Sun, aim for morning sun and afternoon shade.
Water regularly until established, generally for the first 3 months after planting. This will help them develop deeper root systems, which is important for their success and well-being.
Fertilize in early spring with a slow-release balanced fertilizer to keep this plant growing and thriving. Organic gardeners should use a balanced organic fertilizer every two months or so, starting in early spring.
We don’t recommend trimming this plant. It will cause it to bush out instead of growing up.
How to Plant:
- Dig a hole three times as wide as the pot that your plant came in. This will make it easier for the roots to expand.
- The hole should be deep enough that the top of the plant’s root ball is even with or a couple of inches higher than the ground around it.
- Next, mix your native soil with some rich garden soil to provide additional nutrients for your growing plant.
- If your soil is clay-rich, we recommend mixing pine bark in with your native soil at a ratio of about 1:1.
- Re-fill the hole with your native soil mixture.
- Consider also applying 3-4 inches of mulch around the base of your plant to help it retain moisture.
- Gently pat down the soil and water your new planting deeply.
Spacing Your Trees
This is a very wide plant at maturity, so be sure to give it room to grow. We recommend spacing them at least 6-9 feet apart if you’re looking for intertwined foliage. If you want space between your plants, try planting them over 15 feet apart.
Companion Plants for the Empress of China Dogwood
- Try it with some other white blooming partial shade selections, such as the Blushing Bride Hydrangea, October Magic White Shi Shi Camellia, or Southgate Grace Rhododendron. All three of these varieties do well in Partial Sun gardens. Plant them several feet from the base of your Dogwood in a mixed garden bed for an all-season-long flower display.
- If you’re doing a Full Sun planting, the White Wedding Hydrangea and Autumn Lily Encore Azalea are great companion varieties. Both of these varieties will help create a stunning summer display, with the Autumn Lily also adding interest in spring and fall.
Why Should You Order from Plantsbymail.com?
We understand that you’re putting faith in us to choose and ship a quality plant to your door and we take this job seriously. We carefully select healthy specimens that are well-established in their pots and ready to thrive in your landscape. Let us know if you’re not happy with your Empress of China Dogwood and we’ll do whatever we can to fix it.