Macrocarpium sessile (Torr.) Nakai
Swida sessilis (Torr.) A.Heller
Common Name: Blackfruit Dogwood
Cornus sessilis is a deciduous shrub or a small tree that can grow up to 5 metres tall[
The plant is probably harvested from the wild for local use as a food. It is sometimes grown as an ornamental.
Western N. America - northern California, southern Oregon.
An understorey plant, growing in moist ravines and along stream banks; at elevations from 60 - 2,000 metres[
|Cultivation Status||Ornamental, Wild
Cornus sessilis is a moderately cold-hardy plant, tolerating temperatures down to around -150°c when dormant.
An easily grown plant, it succeeds in any soil of good or moderate fertility[
], ranging from acid to shallow chalk[
]. Grows well in heavy clay soils. Succeeds in full sun or light shade[[
Plants can commence flowering when around 2 metres tall[
This species is very closely related to Cornus mas and Cornus officinalis[
Plants in this genus are notably resistant to honey fungus[
The following note is for the closely related Cornus officinalis. It can probably also be applied to this species[
]. The purple-black, ellipsoid fruit of this species is about 10 - 15mm long and 5 - 7mm wide, the thin layer of flesh enclosing a single, large seed[
Fruit - raw or cooked[
]. The fully ripe fruit is quite pleasant but slightly astringent[
]. It is about 1.5cm long[
]. The fruit contains about 8.6% sugars, 2.9% malic acid, 0.74% ash[
Seed - best sown as soon as it is ripe in a cold frame or in an outdoors seedbed if there is sufficient seed[
]. The seed must be separated from the fruit flesh since this contains germination inhibitors[
]. Stored seed should be cold stratified for 3 - 4 months and sown as early as possible in the year[
]. Scarification may also help as may a period of warm stratification before the cold stratification[
]. Germination, especially of stored seed, can be very slow, taking 18 months or more[
]. Prick out the seedlings of cold-frame sown seeds into individual pots as soon as they are large enough to handle and grow the plants on for their first winter in a greenhouse, planting out in the spring after the last expected frosts.
Cuttings of half-ripe side shoots, mid summer in a frame.
Cuttings of mature wood of the current year's growth, taken with a heel if possible, autumn in a cold frame. High percentage[
Layering of new growth in early summer/July. Takes 9 months[