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Viburnum in flower

If you are looking for a shrub that has foliage, flowers, fragrance and can also be used as a hedge, then Viburnums have the lot. Landscapers love them for the versatility, they grow well in most soils and will flower in part shade as well as sun.

They are probably not any gardeners favourite shrub, yet so many include Viburnums as a backbone plant in the garden border. With literally dozens of garden worthy species and cultivars they are just so useful in the garden that they are for sale in every garden centre.

Well suited to many gardens, Viburnum are a versatile group of shrubs to small trees, best known for the 'Snowball Tree'. Although varieties do differ in requirements Viburnums can be grown in USDA zones 2 - 9.

Generally a tough and popular landscaping plant, some with fragrant flowers they are used widely in the garden border as well as in woodland settings they do well in full sun to part shade.

It is the smaller growing species and cultivars that seem to be the most popular, however it is easy to choose on flower, fragrance and foliage, as most species are very easily pruned to shape and size.

The large flowered varieties are very popular, however some species are grown for the wonderful layered branches as well.

Viburnum sargentii 'Onondaga'


Viburnum Varieties

A number of types, species and cultivars are available including the well known

  • Viburnum opulus which is sometimes referred to a the snowball tree which grows from Zone 4-8.
  • Viburnum opulus ‘Nocutt’s Variety’
  • Viburnum plicatum does well in zones 5-9.
  • Viburnum x bodentense 'Dawn' - Winter flowering with fragrant pink flowers.
  • Viburnum tinus - Used widely as a hedging plant
  • Viburnum sargentii 'Onondaga' - A wonderful cultivar with lacy flowers. (pictured right)

Other species available for sale include : Viburnum dentatum, davidii and odoratissimum.


Although the Viburnum species can be propagated from seed, nearly all of the garden varieties are hybrids and are therefore best propagated from softwood cuttings. Fortunately most varieties will str ike very easily from cuttings taken in summer.

Best Viburnums

This will depend on the use

  • For Hedges - Viburnum Tinus and Odoratissimum.
    For a smaller hedge try the smaller leafed, slowwr growing V.tinus. For a larger hedge the faster growing and larger leafed V. Odoratissimum is a better choice.
  • For Flowers - If you could only have one, then maybe Viburnum x juddii, easy to grow, lots of flowers, fragrant and smaller than many. However, we do love Viburnum sargentii 'Onondaga', wonderful lacecaped flowers that put many hydrangeas to shame. And of course Viburnum opulus 'Roseum' the 'Guelder Rose' or 'Snowball Bush'.

Viburnum plants are available for sale from the following nurseries

Offering a wide selection of bulbs, perennials, grasses, herbs trees and shrubs .
Includes: Viburnum plicatum tomentosum, Viburnum carlesii, Viburnum Burkwoodii, Viburnum trilobum.

DIGGING DOG NURSERY - phone (707) 937-1130
PO Box 471 Albion CA 95410
A spectacular selection of hard to find perennials, ornamental grasses, shrubs, trees and vines for your garden. Includes: Viburnum plicatum, Viburnum sargentii, Viburnum carlesii and others.