[dawg-wood, dog-]
any tree or shrub of the genus Cornus, especially C. sanguinea, of Europe, or C. florida, of America.
the wood of any such tree.
a light to medium brown or a medium yellowish-brown color.
having the color dogwood.

1610–20; dog + wood1 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
dogwood (ˈdɒɡˌwʊd)
any of various cornaceous trees or shrubs of the genus Cornus, esp C. sanguinea, a European shrub with clusters of small white flowers and black berries: the shoots are red in winter

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

shrubs and small trees of the genus Cornus, 1610s, earlier dog-tree (1540s); the first element sometimes said to have been perhaps dag -- cf. dagger, dag (v.) "to pierce or stab" (1630s, perhaps 15c.) -- the trees have hard, white wood that was used in making skewers; another
name for it was skewer-wood. But another guess is that the tree was given the name in reference its fruit, which was called dogberry from 1550s, and dog had implications of "cheap, inferior."
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
Still there's something comfortable and soothing in the sight of a sunflower or
  a blossoming dogwood.
Ornamental crops, such as dogwood and azalea, are harvested for landscape
Nature-loving tourists will view maple, oak, birch and dogwood trees sporting
  colorful autumn leaves.
Take advantage as well of horseback riding and mountain biking among the native
  dogwood trees.
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