Cornus controversa

Cornus controversa: The Majestic Wedding Cake Tree

Cornus controversa, commonly known as Swida controversa or the Wedding Cake Tree, belongs to the distinguished Cornaceae family of plants. Native to the Himalayas, China, Korea, and Japan, this deciduous tree is also referred to as the Giant Dogwood due to its impressive size. With a height that can reach up to 15 meters or 50 feet, Cornus controversa is known for its rapid growth, making it an eye-catching addition to any landscape.

Leaves and Blooms: Elegance and Beauty

The dark green leaves of Cornus controversa are ovate in shape and exhibit a glaucous underside. These leaves, measuring approximately 6 inches or 15 centimeters in length, undergo a stunning transformation in the autumn, turning to a rich reddish-purple color that adds vibrant hues to the landscape. In the summer, Cornus controversa graces us with its flat panicles of creamy-white flowers, arranged in elegant clusters. Following the flowers, the tree bears clusters of small black fruits, which serve as a delightful treat for various bird species.

Cultivating Cornus controversa: Nurturing its Grandeur

Light: Cornus controversa thrives in locations that receive ample sunlight or partial shade. While it can tolerate some shade, providing it with full sun will encourage optimal flowering.

Soil: Plant Cornus controversa in organically rich, moist, and well-drained soil. While it can adapt to a range of soil pH levels, it prefers slightly acidic soil. Ensure the soil retains adequate moisture without becoming waterlogged, as excessive moisture can lead to root rot.

Temperature and Shade: In regions with hot climates, it is beneficial to provide Cornus controversa with some shade to protect it from excessive heat. This will aid in maintaining the health and vitality of the tree. However, note that this tree thrives best in areas with cool summers.

Watering: Regular watering is crucial for Cornus controversa during the growing season. However, it is important to avoid overwatering, as soggy conditions can be detrimental. Allow the soil to dry slightly between waterings. During the winter months, reduce watering to accommodate the tree’s dormant period.

Fertilization: Cornus controversa does not require frequent fertilization. Applying a light, balanced fertilizer every 6-8 weeks during the growing season can stimulate new growth and flowering. Dilute the fertilizer to half-strength to prevent overfeeding.

Pests and Diseases: While generally resistant to pests and diseases, Cornus controversa may be susceptible to scale insects, mealybugs, and anthracnose. Regular monitoring and prompt treatment, if necessary, can help maintain the tree’s health and vitality.


While not requiring regular pruning, Cornus controversa can benefit from selective pruning in the spring. Removing any dead or damaged growth will enhance the tree’s appearance and promote its overall well-being.

By following these guidelines and providing care befitting its majestic stature, you can cultivate the splendor of Cornus controversa in your landscape. Its elegant foliage, exquisite blooms, and attractive fruits will leave a lasting impression, accentuating the beauty of your surroundings. Cherish the presence of this extraordinary tree, knowing that with your diligent care, it will flourish and grace your outdoor space for years to come.

Cornus controversa
Beautiful flowers of Cornus controversa
Cornus controversa
Cornus controversa
Cornus controversa
White flowers of Cornus controversa
Cornus controversa
Cornus controversa

Also, read about Cornus capitata or Cornus kousa

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