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Viburnum prunifolium

Common Name(s):
Black haw, Blackhaw viburnum, Plum leaf viburnum
Native Plants, Shrubs, Trees

Viburnum prunifolium, commonly called black haw, is usually grown as a large, upright, multi-stemmed, deciduous shrub with an irregular crown, but it also may be grown as a small, single trunk tree. As a shrub, it typically grows 12-15' tall with a spread of 6-12', but as a tree may reach a height of 30'. The bark is gray/brown with square-like plates. The blackhaw has stiff branches and twiggy growth. It is an easy tree/shrub to transplant.

Regions:  Mountain, Piedmont, Coastal Plains

Seasons of Interest: 

  Leaf:  Fall                    Blooms:  Spring             Nut/Fruit/Seed:  Fall

Wildlife Value:    This plant is moderately resistant to damage from deer. It is a host plant for Spring/Summer Azure butterflies. Its fruits are eaten by songbirds, squirrels and chipmunks.


12-15 ft.
The Blackhaw has non-fragrant white flowers in flat-topped cymes (to 4.5" diameter) that appear in early spring. The flowers give way in autumn to large yellowish fruit that turns into blue-black, berry-like drupes which often persist into winter and are quite attractive to birds and wildlife.
The Blackhaw is easily grown in average, dry to medium, well-drained soil in full sun to part shade. This plant is drought tolerant. Prune immediately after flowering since flower buds form in summer for the following year.
Stiff branches and twiggy growth; rounded head; multistemmed
Sun to partial shade; moist, well drained soil; does well in dry site
White clusters in early spring; large yellowish fruit turns blue black in fall
6-12 ft.
Growth Rate:
Slow to moderate
Ovate, opposite, simple, finely toothed, glossy dark green leaves (to 4" long) that turn attractive shades of red and purple in fall adorn the Blackhaw. The fruits are edible and may be eaten off the bush when ripe or used in jams and preserves.
host plant, deciduous, hedge, deer resistant, songbirds, good fall, showy

NCCES plant id: 571

Viburnum prunifolium Viburnum prunifolium
Suzanne Caldwell, CC BY-NC - 4.0
Viburnum prunifolium Viburnum prunifolium
Fritz Flohr Reynolds, CC BY-SA - 4.0
Viburnum prunifolium Viburnum prunifolium
Cranbrook Science, CC BY - 4.0
Viburnum prunifolium Viburnum prunifolium flower clusters
Debbie Roos