Cornus suecica, the dwarf cornel or bunchberry, is a species of flowering plant in the dogwood family Cornaceae, native to cool temperate and subarctic regions of Europe and Asia, and also locally in extreme northeastern and northwestern North America.

Cornus suecica
Cornus suecica LC0306.jpg
Growing next to lingonberry in Norway
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Tracheophytes
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Eudicots
Clade: Asterids
Order: Cornales
Family: Cornaceae
Genus: Cornus
Subgenus: Cornus subg. Arctocrania
C. suecica
Binomial name
Cornus suecica


Dwarf cornel is a rhizomatous herbaceous perennial growing to 20 cm (8 inches) tall, with few pairs of sessile cauline leaves in opposite pairs, 2–4 cm (341 12 inches) long and 1–3 cm (121 14 inches) broad, with 3-5 veins from the base.[2] The flowers are small, dark purple, produced in a tight umbel that is surrounded by four conspicuous white petal-like bracts 1–1.5 cm (3858 inch) long. The fruit is a red berry.

Habitat and rangeEdit

Cornus suecica is a plant of heaths, moorland and mountains, often growing beneath taller species such as heather (Calluna vulgaris).[3][2] Its range is nearly circumboreal, but it is absent from the continental centres of Asia and North America.[4] In North America, the species is found in Alaska (U.S.) and British Columbia (Canada), and also eastern Canada (Labrador, New Brunswick, Newfoundland, Nova Scotia, and Quebec), as well as Greenland, but not in the intervening region.[5][1]

Where Cornus canadensis, a forest species, and Cornus suecica, a heath or bog species, grow near each other in their overlapping ranges in Alaska, Labrador, and Greenland, they can hybridize by cross-pollination, producing plants with intermediate characteristics.[6]


Cornus suecica is included in the subgenus Arctocrania.[7]


  1. ^ a b "Cornus suecica". Natural Resources Conservation Service PLANTS Database. USDA. Retrieved 9 September 2013.
  2. ^ a b Stace, C. A. (2010). New Flora of the British Isles (Third ed.). Cambridge, U.K.: Cambridge University Press. p. 510. ISBN 9780521707725.
  3. ^ Blamey, M.; Fitter, R.; Fitter, A (2003). Wild flowers of Britain and Ireland: The Complete Guide to the British and Irish Flora. London: A & C Black. p. 168. ISBN 978-1408179505.
  4. ^ Anderberg, Arne. "Den Virtuella Floran, Cornus suecica L." Naturhistoriska riksmuseet, Stockholm, Sweden.
  5. ^ "BONAP distribution maps for North American species of Cornus". Archived from the original on 17 September 2011. Retrieved 17 May 2011.
  6. ^ Neiland, Bonita J. 1971. The forest-bog complex of southeast Alaska. Vegetatio. 22: 1-64.
  7. ^ Murrell, Zack E.; Poindexter, Derick B. (2016). "Cornus subg. Arctocrania". In Flora of North America Editorial Committee (ed.). Flora of North America North of Mexico (FNA). 12. New York and Oxford – via, Missouri Botanical Garden, St. Louis, MO & Harvard University Herbaria, Cambridge, MA.

External linksEdit