Cornus sericea. Swamp Dogwood.
Also see: Cornus circinata. Round-leaved Dogwood. - Cornus florida. Dogwood. - Cornus sericea. Swamp Dogwood.
Nat. Ord. — Cornaceae. Sex. Syst. — Tetrandria Monogynia.
Description. — The Cornus Sericea, known likewise by the names of Rose-willow, Red-osier, Silky Cornel, Red-willow, etc., is a shrub from six to ten feet high, with numerous erect stems, which are covered with a greenish, or brownish-purple bark, of a brighter color on the younger shoots, and sending out opposite, spreading branches, with pubescent twigs. The leaves are pale-green, opposite, from two to four inches long, half as wide, ovate and acuminate, sometimes almost lanceolate, at, others broadly ovate, petiolate, entire, nearly smooth above, with rather prominent veins, covered beneath with a soft, whitish, or rust-colored pubescence. The flowers are yellowish-white, small, and disposed in large, terminal cymes, which are depressed and woolly. Calyx-teeth lanceolate ; stigma, thick and capitate. The fruit consists of globular, berry-formed drupes, collected in bunches, of a beautiful blue color ; stone compressed.
History. — Swamp Dogwood is found in wet thickets, and on the margins of water-courses, from Canada to Carolina, flowering in June and July. The bark is the officinal part, that of the root being preferred ; it possesses similar properties with the Cornus Florida.
Properties and Uses. — Similar to the C. Florida, being however more astringent and less bitter. It has been found useful in dyspepsia and diarrhea, and may be employed as a substitute for the C. Florida in the same doses, and administered in a similar manner. An infusion is very valuable in checking vomiting, especially that arising from pregnancy and diseased uterus. It has also been highly recommended in dropsy, ulcers, malignant fevers, and as an antiseptic.
The American Eclectic Dispensatory, 1854, was written by John King, M. D.