We felt that viburnums are attractive, versatile, adaptable shrubs for any garden. They can serve as hedges or screens and in mixed perennial and shrub borders. We like them most as specimen plants. They usually in the form of shrubs, but can become small ornamental trees(sieboldi). They range in size from the small Dwarf American Cranberry at 2 feet tall by 2 feet wide, to the Siebold at over 15 feet tall.
Viburnums are plants with year round interest. Viburnums have white to pink flowers in the spring. Some are fragrant. They have large, attractive and often textured leaves. Some viburnums have fragrant flowers that are produced in snowball like clusters in the spring. The flower clusters can be of pink buds, which develop into white flowers. Some fruits are red and turn black with age while others are orange and some blue. Leaves are glossy, dark green and turn a burgundy color in the fall. Midsummer berries are an important food source for birds. Viburnums are a must for the avid birder. Viburnums can have colorful red to purple leaves. Some viburnums can become medium-size trees, especially if they are pruned. Viburnums are specimen plants or can be anchors in mixed borders and hedges and screens. You won't find a better group of shrubs for hedges or for massing in groups, since viburnums are delightful in every season and landscape. Some viburnums, such as Prague viburnum, are evergreen and have fragrant flowers. Others, such as leatherleaf viburnum, are semi-evergreen in colder climates, losing their leaves when temperatures dip below 10 degrees.
We like Viburnums because of their adaptability and durability. While they would prefer full sun and moderately watered, well-drained rich soils, they grow very well in part shade in alkaline, clay soils. Diseases and pests are not common for viburnums. We have more trouble from my kids running over them with brush hogs. They claim they were testing their durability. Yet all the viburnums they chopped to the ground survived. In fact, we sold these plants for a premium as they produced better numbers of desireable stems. Their fibrous root system makes them transplant and propagate easily. (We do have more difficulty with the Korean Spice rooted cuttings.)
If you are shopping for a sharp hardy shrub consider one of the many cultivars of the Viburnum family. In fact select a couple of them. You will be rewarded with shrubs with all season interest.Viburnums are popular garden plants, known for their white, often fragrant spring flowers and their fall color. The Asian viburnums such as the Carlesi are the most loved. Perhaps the most known viburnums are the Burkwood viburnum (Viburnum x burkwoodii), and the Korean spice viburnum (V. carlesii), both of which fill the air with a wonderful fragrance in mid-spring. (The Mohican is a cross of the two.) Also popular is the doublefile viburnum (V. plicatum f. tomentosum), valued for its layered habit, fall foliage, and clusters of red fruits, and its close relative the Shasta, a gold medal winner. We have most of these viburnums at our 5275 W. Swamp Rd. nursery in Fountainville Pa. ready for customer pickup. Viburnum acerifolium (Maple-leafed viburnum) Although I wouldn't garden without any of these, I like the native viburnums. They may not provide the flower fragrance of their Asian counterparts, but I love them for their fall foliage color and for their fruit displays, which attract birds to my garden in the fall and winter months. In addition, several are useful to waterwise gardeners or in urban conditions. They require only corrective pruning, and none commonly suffer from pests or diseases. These native viburnums are hardy and durable. Once you establish them they will not require a lot of attention and give years of enjoyment. Viburnums are considered moist woodland plants. In nature they are found along steam banks from Long Island to Florida. When you come to our 5275 West Swamp Rd. location ask us to show some in their native habitat that we found along our stream bank. These plants perform well under normal landscape conditions. I especially like the floral display in the spring and these viburnums that bear fruit in the fall. Winterthur has great red leaves and abundant fruit in the fall. This cultivar needs a cross pollinator such as viburnum nudum. Native Americans used Viburnum dentatum (arrowwood viburnum) for arrow shafts. The stems are long and strait. This plant will grow in places many plants struggle. So if you have had trouble with plants in a harsh location try this cultivar.