Hybrid leatherleaf viburnum

Creamy white flowers of hybrid leatherleaf viburnum

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.


Botanical name:

Viburnum x rhytidophylloides

All Common Names:

Hybrid leatherleaf viburnum, Lantanaphyllum viburnum

Family (English):


Family (Botanic):


Tree or Plant Type:

  • Shrub


  • Deciduous (seasonally loses leaves)

Native Locale:

  • Non-native

Landscape Uses:

  • Foundation,
  • Massing,
  • Mixed border,
  • Screen,
  • Specimen

Size Range:

  • Large shrub (more than 8 feet)

Light Exposure:

  • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily),
  • Partial sun/shade (4-6 hrs light daily)

Hardiness Zones:

  • Zone 5 (Chicago),
  • Zone 6,
  • Zone 7,
  • Zone 8

Soil Preference:

  • Moist, well-drained soil

Season of Interest:

  • Mid spring,
  • Late spring

Flower Color & Fragrance:

  • White

Shape or Form:

  • Arching,
  • Upright

Growth Rate:

  • Moderate

More Information:

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
Hybrid leatherleaf viburnum (Viburnum x rhytidophylloides)
Hybrid leatherleaf viburnum leaves
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.

Location of Viburnum x rhytidophylloides (Hybrid leatherleaf viburnum) at the Arboretum

We do not seem to have this in our living collection.