Legend of the Dogwood

April 26, 2007 at 7:16 pm (flora, gardens, Virginia)

Dogwood blossoms on a dogwood tree that I planted about three years ago. It gets more beautiful with each season. Dogwood is both the state flower and state tree of Virginia, although it is the white wild dogwood. There are natural wild dogwoods here that are pink too, however they are a much lighter colored pink and not seen as frequently as are the white dogwoods

There is a lovely legend associated with the dogwood tree. The dogwood’s blossoms are in the form of a cross — two long petals and two short petals. At the outer edge of each petal there are rust-stained and blood-stained nail prints and in the center of each blossom is a crown of thorns. This came about at the dogwood tree’s great grief and distress at being used to make the timbers of Christ’s cross. Thenceforth, in the Springtime, it reminds all who see this to remember

In Jesus’ time, the dogwood grew
To a stately size and a lovely hue.

‘Twas strong & firm it’s branches interwoven
For the cross of Christ its timbers were chosen.

Seeing the distress at this use of their wood
Christ made a promise which still holds good:

“Never again shall the dogwood grow
Large enough to be used so

Slender & twisted, it shall be
With blossoms like the cross for all to see.

As blood stains the petals marked in brown
The blossom’s center wears a thorny crown.

All who see it will remember me
Crucified on a cross from the dogwood tree.

Cherished and protected this tree shall be
A reminder to all of my agony.” ~~Anonymous

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