By Mary H. Dyer, Master Naturalist and Master Gardener Also known a swamp dogwood, silky dogwood is a mid-size shrub that grows wild along streams, ponds and other wetlands across much of the eastern half of the United States. In the home landscape, silky dogwood bushes work well in moist, naturalized areas and do a good job at stabilizing the soil in erosion-prone sites. Mature height generally ranges from 6 to 12 feet. Read on for additional silky dogwood information. Silky Dog Information Silky dogwood (Cornus amomum) is named for the silky gray hairs that cover the undersides of leaves and twigs, which turn purplish in spring and reddish-brown in autumn. It is from these silky hairs that make silky dogwood identification fairly easy. Clusters of tiny creamy white flowers bloom in late spring and early summer. The plant is often found in shade or semi-shade but tolerates moderate sunlight.