(Flowering Dogwood - 01)  Twenty-two years ago (1980), when we first moved into our new home, we had a flowering dogwood growing on the edge of the woods at the end of our driveway.  It was one of the Spring joys we looked forward to each year.  Unfortunately, it died of a disease that seemed to wipe out most of the dogwoods in our area.  This year, we have begun to see them again at Sleepy Hollow Lake.  This one was growing in the park across the road from our home.
(Flowering Dogwood - 06)  The flowering dogwood is found throughout the Eastern United States.  It can grow to heights of thirty-five feet and spread its lanky branches twenty five feet.
(Flowering Dogwood - 03)  The flowers of the flowering dogwood grow at the end of branches.  Though we could not find any reference in the literature, it appears that the flowers only grow at the end of new-growth branches, as shown in this photograph.  The flower buds open at the same time that the leaves begin to develop.
(Flowering Dogwood - 04)  The flower of the flowering dogwood is the small green cluster in the center of the four bracts, which appear to be the flower's petals.  Bracts are the protective covering of the buds. They open and fold away when the flower blooms.  Some of the bracts have pink tips, as can be seen in this picture.
(Flowering Dogwood - 02)  When the bracts of the flowering dogwood are fully open, they measure about two inches in diameter.
(Flowering Dogwood - 05)  This is an enlargement of the flower cluster at the center of the four whitish bracts.
(Flowering Dogwood - 07)  In this enlarged photo, the detail of the bracts and central flower cluster are more evident.  The length of each bract is about one inch.  The somewhat distorted center on the outer edge of each bract is where they grew together at the tip of the bud and tore apart as the bud opened.
(Flowering Dogwood - 08)  This is another enlargement of the flowering dogwood bloom.  We consider their return this year to be one of God's many blessings.  Every time we destroy a portion of our environment, kill or harm an animal or human, we lose a blessing; and in the process, we harden our hearts to recognizing many of the blessings that remain.
(Flowering Dogwood - 09)  This is another enlargement of the developing flowers (green center) of the flowering dogwood.
(Flowering Dogwood - 10)  As the flowering dogwood matures, the sepals begin to flatten out and form the shape of a cross, and the flowers in the center begin to bloom.
(Flowering Dogwood - 10a)  In this photo, we get a closer look at the crepe-paper-like texture of the sepals, and the opening of the first tiny flowers.
(Flowering Dogwood - 11)  In this bee's eye view of the flowering dogwood, we can see the buds and the tiny flowers, each with its four petals, four stamens, and one pistil.
(Flowering Dogwood - 12)  This is another close up look at the cluster of buds and flowers of the the flowering dogwood.  In the center, we can see one of the buds beginning to split before opening.  In the lower right, the anthers at the tips of the four stamens are clearly visible.
(Flowering Dogwood - 13)  The light and shadow gives an interesting contrast to the flowering dogwood flower cluster.  The actual size of this entire cluster is less than 1/2 inch across.  In the flower in the upper left, we get a good look at the pistil.
(Flowering Dogwood - 14)  We had been watching carefully one particular flowering dogwood tree for every change that occurred within the reach of our camera, so that we could take another photo for this series.
(Flowering Dogwood - 15)  There are now five open flowers on this flowering dogwood bloom.
(Flowering Dogwood - 16)  In this cluster, most of the flowering dogwood flowers have opened.
(Flowering Dogwood - 16a)  In this bee's eye view of a portion of the 1/2 inch flower cluster of the flowering dogwood, we can see how the flowers burst forth from their bud casings.
(Flowering Dogwood - 17)  This is another bee's eye view of part of one of the 1/2 inch flowering dogwood's flower clusters.  Every time we see these beautiful tiny flowers, we marvel at the enormous detail in the whole of God's creation.
(Flowering Dogwood - 18)  In this close up view of the flowering dogwood's bloom, we can see down into one of the bud casings just as the flower begins to emerge.
(Flowering Dogwood - 19)  As you have probably guessed by now, we have been utterly fascinated with the tiny flowers of the flowering dogwood.  A fully open flower is only about 1/8 inch across.
(Flowering Dogwood - 20)  After all the close-ups, we decided to step back a moment and look at the overall picture.  Each of the blooms has its own flowers opening.  The full size photo is approximately actual size.
(Flowering Dogwood - 20a)  This full size photo of the flowering dogwood bloom is about four times the actual size.   It helps put into perspective how tiny the flowers in the center cluster really are.
(Flowering Dogwood - 21)  The sepals have fallen; the flowers have faded; and now the berries have appeared on the flowering dogwood.
(Flowering Dogwood - 22)  Only a single berry is left on each of these two blooms of the flowering dogwood.
(Flowering Dogwood - 23)  This is a cluster of flowering dogwood berries that have not yet ripened.
(Flowering Dogwood - 24)  The light and shadow gives an interesting contrast to these two berry clusters on the flowering dogwood.
(Flowering Dogwood - 25)  By the end of summer, the flowering dogwood berries have fully ripened.
(Flowering Dogwood - 26)  Our hope and prayer in publishing this photo journal on the flowering dogwood is that it would give all of us greater appreciation for this tree and the whole of creation.  If we can learn to care for one tiny piece of God's creation, we can learn to expand our sphere of unconditional love and compassion to every plant, to every animal, and to every other human being.  And when we learn to do this, we will truly have peace on earth.
(Flowering Dogwood - 27)  In our part of the country, the flowering dogwood trees begin to bud sometime around the middle of April.
(Flowering Dogwood - 28)  Within a few days, the flowering dogwood bracts of the bud begin to open.
(Flowering Dogwood - 29)  The bracts of the flowering dogwood continue to open, revealing the tiny inner flower buds.
(Flowering Dogwood - 30)  As the bracts of the flowering dogwood continue to enlarge and open, the leaves begin to sprout from the branches.
(Flowering Dogwood - 31)  More of the flowering dogwood bracts open, as this bloom is doing.
(Flowering Dogwood - 32)  This is a partial side view of the flowering dogwood flower buds nestled within the "basin" of the unfurling bracts.
(Flowering Dogwood - 33)  This is a partial side view of the sprouting leaves and opening bloom at the end of a flowering dogwood branch.
(Flowering Dogwood - 34)  This flowering dogwood is growing in the park next to our home.  We photographed it in the Spring of 2005.
(Flowering Dogwood - 35)  The long thin branches of the flowering dogwood stretch out through the Spring woods to present their bouquets of flowers.
(Flowering Dogwood - 36)  This is another look at the flowering dogwood.
(Flowering Dogwood - 37)  While on one of our walks, we spotted this flowering dogwood.  The deeper coloration of the bracts attracted our attention, because they had a yellow tint with larger purplish colored tips.
(Flowering Dogwood - 37a)  In this photo, we have a closer look at the flowering dogwood bloom with its deeper colored bracts.
(Flowering Dogwood - 37b)  In this photo of a flowering dogwood bloom, we have a closer look at the cluster of flower buds in the center and two of the bracts.
(Flowering Dogwood - 38)  This is another of the flowering dogwood blooms with its yellowish colored bracts with their purple tips.
(Flowering Dogwood - 38a)  In this close up photo of a flowering dogwood bloom, we can see the way the flower buds are beginning to swell and lengthen.  We also have a closer look at the tip of one of the bracts.
(Flowering Dogwood - 39)  This is another of the yellowish colored flowering dogwood blooms.
(Flowering Dogwood - 39a)  In this close up view of a flowering dogwood bloom, we can see that all of the flower buds have filled out, and soon will begin to flower.
(Flowering Dogwood - 40)  Another Spring, and the flowering dogwood are beginning to open.
(Flowering Dogwood - 40a)  Before the leaves are open the creamy white purple-tipped bracts of the flowering dogwood begin to open.
(Flowering Dogwood - 41)  This is another view of the Spring opening of the flowering dogwood.
(Flowering Dogwood - 42)  The flowering dogwood wave their whitish bracts in the spring breeze, as if announcing that the woodland trees are beginning to sprout their leaves and flowers.
(Flowering Dogwood - 42a)  We considering the beautiful contract of the bright flowering dogwood blooms against the background of the dark trees and blue sky to be one of God's blessings.
(Flowering Dogwood - 43)  The bracts of the glowering dogwood are now fully open.
(Flowering Dogwood - 43a)  In this photo, we have a closer look at some of the flowering dogwood blooms with their open bracts and inner cluster of flower buds.
(Flowering Dogwood - 44)  This is another look at the flowering dogwood blooms.
(Flowering Dogwood - 44a)  In this photo of the flowering dogwood, we can see the leaves beginning to sprout below the blooms and at the end of some of the branches.
(Flowering Dogwood - 45)  In this close up view of a flowering dogwood bloom, we can see the cluster of swollen flower buds.
(Flowering Dogwood - 46)  This is another look at the flowering dogwood blooms.
(Flowering Dogwood - 47)  This is one of the flowering dogwood trees we see while walking around Sleepy Hollow Lake.
(Flowering Dogwood - 48)  This is another look at the flowering dogwood.
(Flowering Dogwood - 49)  In the Autumn, the flowering dogwood changes into her red dress to help decorate the woodlands.
(Flowering Dogwood - 49a)  In this photo, we get a closer look at the flowering dogwood with what we believe is next year's bud at the end of the branch with the red leaves highlighting it from below.
(Flowering Dogwood - 50)  This is another look at the autumn bud at the end of the flowering dogwood tree branch.
(Flowering Dogwood - 50a)  This is a close up look at next year's bud at the end of the flowering dogwood branch.

(Flowering Dogwood - 51)  This is another look at the beautiful fall colors of the flowering dogwood's leaves with the remains of this year's flower seeds along one of with next year's buds.
(Flowering Dogwood - 51a)  In this photo, we have a close up look at one of the red flowering dogwood leaves and the remains of this year's flower, and next year's bud.
(Flowering Dogwood - 52)  This is a final look at the red leaves of autumn of the flowering dogwood until next year, that is, unless we look at them again on this web site.
(Flowering Dogwood - 53)  We took this photo of the flowering dogwood in the Spring of 2008.
(Flowering Dogwood - 54)  This is another look at the flowering dogwood bloom.
(Flowering Dogwood - 54a)  This is a close up look at the flower buds on a flowering dogwood bloom.
(Flowering Dogwood - 55)  These are some of the blooms of the flowering dogwood dancing in the breeze along the side of the road.
(Flowering Dogwood - 56) This photo of the flowering dogwood's buds and flowers was taken in Ocala, FL by Ron Pagano, who sent it to us on 7 Mar 2011. Thank you, Ron.
(Flowering Dogwood - 57) This photo of the flowering dogwood's buds and flowers was taken in Ocala, FL by Ron Pagano, who sent it to us on 7 Mar 2011. Thank you, Ron.
(Flowering Dogwood - 57a) This photo of the flowering dogwood's buds and flowers was taken in Ocala, FL by Ron Pagano, who sent it to us on 7 Mar 2011. Thank you, Ron. We cropped the photo to present this close-up view.
(Flowering Dogwood - 58) This photo of the flowering dogwood's buds and flowers was taken in Ocala, FL by Ron Pagano, who sent it to us on 7 Mar 2011. Thank you, Ron.
(Flowering Dogwood - 59) This photo of the flowering dogwood's buds and flowers was taken in Ocala, FL by Ron Pagano, who sent it to us on 7 Mar 2011. Thank you, Ron.
(Flowering Dogwood - 60) This photo of the flowering dogwood's buds and flowers was taken in Ocala, FL by Ron Pagano, who sent it to us on 7 Mar 2011. Thank you, Ron.
(Flowering Dogwood - 60a) This photo of the flowering dogwood's buds and flowers was taken in Ocala, FL by Ron Pagano, who sent it to us on 7 Mar 2011. Thank you, Ron. We cropped the photo to present this close-up view.
(Flowering Dogwood - 61) This photo of the blooms of the flowering dogwood was taken in Ocala, FL by Ron Pagano, who sent it to us on 7 Mar 2011. Thank you, Ron.