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Small Viburnum Viburnum obovatum

Other Common Name(s):

Phonetic Spelling
vih-BUR-num ob-oh-VAY-tum
Description

Walter's Viburnum is a SE USA native large shrub or small tree that is densely twiggy and upright ascending. it is not native to NC but could easily grow in southern Piedmont and coastal areas of the state. It is evergreen to semi-evergreen with a dense rounded form. It prefers consistently moist well-drained soils and appreciates some afternoon shade. Its native habitat is the coastal plains in hammocks, thickets and swamp margins. This plant is slightly salt tolerant. Even though its native range is zones 8-9 it will grow in zones 7-10.

The small leaves add varying amounts of purple color in fall and remain semi-evergreen to evergreen in warm winter climates. Tiny, white, 5-petaled flowers in dome-shaped clusters bloom in early spring. Oval blue-black fruits follow and mature in fall. 

Plant in full sun to partial shade in average moist well-drained soils. Grow along ponds or bogs in sunny or woodland sites.

See this plant in the following landscape:
Cultivars / Varieties:
  • 'Christmas Star'
  • ‘Mrs. Schiller’s Delight’
  • ‘Reifler’s Dwarf’
    4-5 feet tall
  • 'Whorled Class'
'Christmas Star', ‘Mrs. Schiller’s Delight’, ‘Reifler’s Dwarf’, 'Whorled Class'
Tags:
#bees#evergreen#sun#showy flowers#partial shade#showy berries#white flowers#shrub#semi-evergreen#salt tolerant#pond margins#deer resistant#native garden#bogs#food source soft mast fruit#birds#woodlands#stormwater demo garden orange co
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
  • 'Christmas Star'
  • ‘Mrs. Schiller’s Delight’
  • ‘Reifler’s Dwarf’
    4-5 feet tall
  • 'Whorled Class'
'Christmas Star', ‘Mrs. Schiller’s Delight’, ‘Reifler’s Dwarf’, 'Whorled Class'
Tags:
#bees#evergreen#sun#showy flowers#partial shade#showy berries#white flowers#shrub#semi-evergreen#salt tolerant#pond margins#deer resistant#native garden#bogs#food source soft mast fruit#birds#woodlands#stormwater demo garden orange co
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Viburnum
    Species:
    obovatum
    Family:
    Viburnaceae
    Life Cycle:
    Perennial
    Woody
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    SE USA
    Distribution:
    AL, FL, GA, SC
    Wildlife Value:
    Early food source for bees. Birds and other wildlife eat the fruits.
    Play Value:
    Wildlife Food Source
    Dimensions:
    Height: 8 ft. 0 in. - 25 ft. 0 in.
    Width: 6 ft. 0 in. - 10 ft. 0 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Shrub
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Broadleaf Evergreen
    Deciduous
    Semi-evergreen
    Habit/Form:
    Dense
    Erect
    Oval
    Maintenance:
    Medium
    Texture:
    Fine
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
    Partial Shade (Direct sunlight only part of the day, 2-6 hours)
    Soil Texture:
    Clay
    Loam (Silt)
    Sand
    Soil pH:
    Acid (<6.0)
    Neutral (6.0-8.0)
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Available Space To Plant:
    6-feet-12 feet
    NC Region:
    Coastal
    Piedmont
    USDA Plant Hardiness Zone:
    7b, 7a, 8b, 8a, 9b, 9a, 10b, 10a
  • Fruit:
    Fruit Color:
    Black
    Red/Burgundy
    Fruit Value To Gardener:
    Showy
    Display/Harvest Time:
    Fall
    Fruit Type:
    Drupe
    Fruit Length:
    < 1 inch
    Fruit Width:
    < 1 inch
    Fruit Description:
    1/4 inch red to shiny black drupes in fall
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    White
    Flower Inflorescence:
    Cyme
    Flower Value To Gardener:
    Showy
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Spring
    Flower Shape:
    Star
    Flower Petals:
    4-5 petals/rays
    Flower Size:
    < 1 inch
    Flower Description:
    1.75-2.25 inch dome-shaped clusters of small white flowers open early spring.
  • Leaves:
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Broadleaf Evergreen
    Deciduous
    Semi-evergreen
    Leaf Color:
    Green
    Leaf Feel:
    Glossy
    Leaf Value To Gardener:
    Long-lasting
    Showy
    Deciduous Leaf Fall Color:
    Purple/Lavender
    Leaf Type:
    Simple
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Opposite
    Leaf Shape:
    Oblanceolate
    Obovate
    Spatulate
    Leaf Margin:
    Entire
    Serrate
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Length:
    1-3 inches
    Leaf Width:
    1-3 inches
    Leaf Description:
    Leaves at 1 to 2 inches long and 1/3 to 1.25 inches wide. They are often a lustrous dark green in summer with a varying amount of purple fall color. They are evergreen during warm winters and semi-evergreen to deciduous in cold winter. Margins are entire to slightly toothed.
  • Stem:
    Stem Color:
    Brown/Copper
    Red/Burgundy
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
    Stem Description:
    Reddish-brown stems
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Pond
    Woodland
    Landscape Theme:
    Pollinator Garden
    Rain Garden
    Design Feature:
    Foundation Planting
    Hedge
    Screen/Privacy
    Attracts:
    Butterflies
    Songbirds
    Resistance To Challenges:
    Deer
    Heat
    Humidity
    Rabbits
    Salt