Leatherleaf viburnum is a large, semi-evergreen shrub reaching 8 to 10 feet high, used for background borders, screening or specimen plantings. It is a hybrid cross between Wayfaringtree and leatherleaf viburnum. May be difficult to find in nurseries.
This plant has some cultivated varieties. Go to list of cultivars.
All Common Names:
Tree or Plant Type:
- Deciduous (seasonally loses leaves)
- Mixed border,
- Large shrub (more than 8 feet)
- Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily),
- Partial sun/shade (4-6 hrs light daily)
- Zone 5 (Chicago),
- Zone 6,
- Zone 7,
- Zone 8
- Moist, well-drained soil
Season of Interest:
- Mid spring,
- Late spring
Flower Color & Fragrance:
Shape or Form:
Size & Form
An upright, spreading shrub reaching 8 to 10 feet high and wide.
Tree & Plant Care
Best in full sun to part shade out of direct wind
Mulch provides cooler root environment and conserves moisture.
Flowers on old wood, prune after flowering
May have dieback in harsh winters
Disease, pests, and problems
No serious problems
Native geographic location and habitat
Of hybrid origin; cross between Wayfaringtree (Viburnum lantana) and leatherleaf viburnum (Viburnum rhytidophyllum).
Leaf or needle arrangement, size, shape, and texture
photo: John Hagstrom
Opposite, 4 to 6 inches long elliptical shaped leaves
Dark green with a leathery, rugose texture
Semi-evergreen in the southern end of its range; deciduous in the northern climate
No fall color, but leaves will stay on the plant late into fall.
Flower arrangement, shape, and size
Small, creamy white flowers in 3 to 4 inch, flat-topped to slightly domed clusters
Fruit, cone, nut, and seed descriptions
Berry-like fruits (drupes); red maturing to black
Requires other viburnums near by for pollination to promote good fruit production.
Cultivars and their differences
Alleghany hybrid leatherleaf viburnum (Viburnum x rhytidophylloides 'Alleghany'): Large, dense 10 to 12 feet high, rounded habit; very dark green leathery leaves; flowers and fruits more abundantly. More cold hardier than hybrid parents.
Willowwood hybrid leatherleaf viburnum (Viburnum x rhytidophylloides 'Willowwood'): A 10 to 15 feet high and 10 feet wide, rounded shrub with arching branches; dark green leathery foliage; cold hardy in the Midwest.