The Viburnum group of shrubs is one of the most versatile ranges of garden shrubs with seasons of interest through winter, spring, summer and autumn. As well as being either deciduous or evergreen, winter or summer flowering, Viburnums also cover a range of sizes and growth habits that begs for inclusion somewhere in any garden.
Add to that the fact that many have deeply scented flowers, autumn foliage colour to compete with all but the finest maples, berries with colours ranging from golden yellow through to near black, and relatively trouble-free growing requirements and you can soon see why the Viburnum family is so popular.
It is quite possible to have a Viburnum in flower at any given month of the year, with some of the evergreen forms being in flower for several months – and through the winter at that!
Most of the Viburnums are fully hardy, and relatively free of troublesome pests or diseases - and scented Viburnums are legendary. If planted in the right place – Viburnums will rarely, if ever, need pruning. Together with that, if you happen to plant in the wrong place, then quite a few are happy to be pruned hard, and come back at you for more in a few years!
Some are at home in the shrub border, whilst some are worthy of a central lawn specimen place. Others are suitable for hedges or screens, or low enough to be considered for use as good ground cover.
Versatility is certainly a term that springs to mind when thinking and writing about the Viburnum group of shrubs. Name me a month for instance and I can tell you the name of a Viburnum that will be in flower.
Low and spreading; tall and upright: Sumer; winter; autumn; or spring flowering: Evergreen or deciduous: Flower; foliage; berries: Screening; groundcover: Full sun; dappled shade: Black berries; yellow berries; red berries: I could go on!
Above all, the Viburnums are easy to grow, hardy of frost and winter, reasonably drought tolerant and only need minimal pruning if you must, or if grown as a hedge, can be clipped to shape and size as with any hedge. The evergreen types seemingly unaffected by salt air, so make for good seaside planting, though may suffer a little wind scorch at the leaf edges. The flowers are robust enough to recover from most rainy periods, with the winter flowering evergreen types rarely affected.
Viburnum davidii -
low growing evergreen - grown mainly for
and blue/black berries
Viburnum globosum - Round shrub, to 3m tall and spread
Viburnum japonicum - Dark glossed leaved on dense shrub - very stout.
Viburnum pragense - Bushy evergreen with attractive wrinkled leaves
Viburnum rhytidophyllum - Long leathery leaves on this large Viburnum. Creamy white flowers
Viburnum tinus types - Laurustinus - (V. t. 'Eve Price' | Viburnum tinus French White | V. t. 'Gwenllian' | V. t. 'Lucidum' | V. t. 'Variegatum' |
bodnantense types (V. x b. 'Charles Lamont' | V x b 'Dawn'
- 'Pink Dawn' |
Viburnum x burkwoodii types ( V. x b. 'Anne Russell' | V x b. 'Chenaultii' | V x b 'Park Farm Hybrid' |
Viburnum x carlecephalum
Viburnum carlesii types ( V. c. 'Aurora' | V. c. Diana |
Viburnum dilatum types ( V. d. 'Catskill' | V. d. Xanthocarpum)
Viburnum farreri - Viburnum fragrans
Viburnum x juddii
Viburnum lantana - the native deciduous spindle tree.
Viburnum opulus types (V. o. 'Compactum' | V. o. 'Sterile - or 'Roseum' | V. o. 'Xanthocarpum' |
Viburnum plicatum types (V. p. 'GHrandiflorum' | V. p. 'Lanarth' | V. p. 'Mariesii' | V . p. 'Pink Beauty' |
V. lantana | V. x bodnantense 'Charles Lamont' | V. betulifolium | V. tinus 'French White' | V. plicatum 'Pink Beaty' |