What has been your experience with disease-resistant Cornus florida?

last year

I need a small deciduous tree in my front yard to provide shade and leaf litter for groundcover, yet tall enough to walk under. Wildlife sustenance would be a plus. Full sun, preferably native, and preferably a dogwood. Zone 7, East Tennessee.

C. alternifolia might be OK if I could prune the bottom branches.

The Cherokee series of C. florida are more readily available here. So I'm sort of focusing on them.

So. How tall and wide do Cherokee cultivars get in full sun?

Two resident dogwoods are accidentally growing in afternoon sun and doing well. However, they started out in shade, until the larger trees died. They are too tall (over 20 feet) for the location I need.

If the consensus says to forget dogwoods, then an alternative is a crabapple, despite it's not being native.

Thanks for any advice.

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