Species at Risk

Eastern Flowering Dogwood

Eastern Flowering Dogwood (Cornus florida)

Status in Canada: Endangered

Status in Ontario: Endangered

Status at SWCR: Occasional and Rare at both tracts

Eastern Flowering Dogwood is a small understory tree that produces clusters of showy white flowers in spring.

Quick Facts:

  • It occurs only in the Carolinian Forest Zone of southwestern Ontario.
  • Because of their flowers, it is commonly used as an ornamental tree in gardens and parks.
  • It can be found along the borders of woodlands and in sunny openings within Carolinian forests.

Threats at the St. Williams Conservation Reserve:

Dogwood Anthracnose Fungus: an invasive fungal infection that has drastically reduced populations in Ontario.

Forest Succession: Succession increases shading and reduces habitat suitability for dogwoods, often associated with long-term fire suppression in Ontario woodlands.

Activities that can damage critical Eastern Flowering Dogwood habitat include:

  1. Vegetation management activities that can crush or destroy plants, herbicide use to control invasive plants, conifer plantation thinning.
  2. Off-trail recreational activities that can trample plants, or remove them from their habitat, such as trampling, crushing under vehicles, and collecting.

St. Williams Conservation Reserve management practices:

  • Population monitoring
  • Forest thinning activities
  • Enforcement of unauthorized trail use
  • Prescribed burns

What you can do to help:

  • Follow the  code of conduct for recreational activities in the Conservation Reserve and know and respect the current trail-use regulations.
  • Report unauthorized trail use or any illegal activity related to plants and wildlife to 1-877-TIPS-MNR (847-7667).

More information:

Species At Risk Public Registry Profile

Ontario Species at Risk Profile

Funding for this project was provided through the Species At Risk Stewardship Fund