Ten Things About . . . Viburnums

1. There are over 150 named species of viburnums, and multitudes of named cultivars as well.

2. There are deciduous, semi-evergreen, and evergreen viburnums.

3. Viburnums can grow anywhere from two to thirty feet tall, depending on the variety.

4. Viburnum blossoms can be sweetly scented, unscented, or terribly stinky, depending, again, upon variety.

5. They grow best in full sun to partial shade, in moderately fertile, well-drained soil, though there are some varieties that prefer dry conditions.

6. If you want your viburnum to produce berries, you should have at least a couple of different species planted. The majority of them will not fruit unless there is a different species nearby to act as a pollinator.

7. Some species of viburnum are great for attracting wildlife. Arrowwood viburnum  (Viburnum dentatum) and American cranberry bush (Viburnum trilobum) both produce fruit that birds absolutely love. When they are in bloom, many viburnums attract plenty of pollinators, including bees, hoverflies, and butterflies.

8. Many viburnums boast stunning fall foliage, from the bright red leaves of American cranberry viburnum to the almost purple of some Doublefile viburnums.

9. Viburnums are easy to propagate from softwood cuttings taken in summer. You can also grow them from seed, but it is a long process.

10. Viburnums are generally easy to grow and don’t have many pest or disease problems. However, they can sometimes develop problems with aphids, scale, mealybugs, mildew and leaf spot.

I hope you enjoyed this look at one of my favorite plant groups! We have four viburnums on our 1/4 acre lot, and I’m always looking for spots to plant just one more. What is your favorite viburnum?

“Ten Things Thursdays” (alliteration is fun!) is going to be a regular feature here on Gardening in the Mitten. Every Thursday, I’ll look at some facet of gardening, whether it’s a plant, a tool, an insect, whatever, and post ten (interesting-to-me) tidbits about it. I know I’ve had fun coming up with these, and I hope you enjoy them as well!