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Common (vernacular) names applied to California vascular plants

compiled by Elizabeth Painter

up to date as of May 1, 2016

Common names (also referred to as vernacular names) are applied differently at different times and places by different users. This list is compiled from many sources and is intended to be as comprehensive as possible. It is not intended to indicate which common name is correct or preferred. Please send comments about this page to Elizabeth Painter (

TaxonCornus sericea subsp. occidentalis
Family common name(s)dogwood; cornel; cornels
Genus common name(s)dogwood; cornel; dogberry tree; dogberry-tree; bunch-berry; bunch berry; bunchberry; puppy-wood; puppywood
Species common name(s)red-osier dogwood; red osier dogwood; red osier dog wood; redosier dogwood; wild red osier dogwood; red-osier cornel; red osier cornel; red-osier; red-osier; red osier; wild red-osier; wild red osier; red-twig dogwood; red twig dogwood; redtwig dogwood; red-stemmed dogwood; red stemmed dogwood; red-stemmed cornel; red-stem dogwood; redstem dogwood; waxberry cornel; wax-berry cornel; running dogwood; gutter-tree; gutter tree
Common name(s) generally applied to other taxa or multiple taxawestern dogwood, western red dogwood, western cornel, American dogwood, creek dogwood, female dogwood, silky cornel, silky dogwood, white dogwood are applied to multiple Cornus taxa; kinnikinik, kinnikinnik, kinnikinnick, kinnikinnic, kinnikinic, kinnikinick, arrow-wood, arrow wood, arrowwood, dogberry, dog-berry, dog berry, hounds berry, houndsberry applied to taxa in multiple families
Common name(s), rejectednot recommended (possibly pejorative or derogatory): squawbush, squaw bush
Synonymy: The Jepson Manual (1993), FNA, PLANTS, etcCornus occidentalis (Torr. & A. Gray) Coville
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