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Dogwoods Bloom, and Music Echoes

Pink Cornus florida cultivars drinking up the sun at a Portland, Ore., nursery.
/ Ketzel Levine, NPR
Pink Cornus florida cultivars drinking up the sun at a Portland, Ore., nursery.

A predictable, yet wondrous, event has begun around the country: the American dogwood is in bloom. This ancient creature, which is native to both coasts, has changed little since the time of the dinosaurs.

The brief flowering of the dogwoods can elicit thoughts of music: the blossoms build slowly to a crescendo, and then fade into the background for another year. To many, their more muted display only increases their sentimental appeal.

NPR's Ketzel Levine consulted several experts -- on music, and flowers -- to learn what kind of music they hear when they view dogwoods in bloom.

From Dogwoods: The Genus Cornus by Paul Cappiello and Don Shadow:

Growing Dogwoods in the Garden

Cultural management is the bane of the flowering dogwood's existence. The tree does best in moist, acidic soil in a site with a touch of afternoon shade. It will perform admirably in full sun with adequate moisture, but who can be trusted to provide adequate water? Can you just hear it now, "I promise, honey, I'll water it twice a week . . . !"

Copyright 2005 NPR

Ketzel Levine
NPR Senior Correspondent Ketzel Levine reports for Morning Edition.
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