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Showy cotoneaster

Showy cotoneaster in full flower.

Showy cotoneaster is a useful ornamental shrub for a mixed border, in mass, for screening, or as a single specimen. Abundant clusters of small, white flowers cover the showy cotoneaster in spring. In fall, the shrub’s yellow-tinted foliage acts as a backdrop for the showy red fruit. Plant the showy cotoneaster in full sun to ensure an outstanding display.

Botanical name:

Cotoneaster multiflora

All Common Names:

Showy cotoneaster, many-flowered cotoneaster

Family (English):


Family (Botanic):


Tree or Plant Type:

  • Shrub


  • Deciduous (seasonally loses leaves)

Native Locale:

  • Non-native

Landscape Uses:

  • Hedge,
  • Massing,
  • Mixed border,
  • Screen,
  • Specimen

Size Range:

  • Large shrub (more than 8 feet)

Light Exposure:

  • Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily)

Hardiness Zones:

  • Zone 4,
  • Zone 5 (Chicago),
  • Zone 6,
  • Zone 7

Soil Preference:

  • Moist, well-drained soil


  • Alkaline soil

Ornamental Interest:

  • Spring blossoms,
  • Showy fruit,
  • Showy flowers

Season of Interest:

  • Mid spring,
  • Late spring,
  • Late summer,
  • Early fall

Flower Color & Fragrance:

  • White

Shape or Form:

  • Arching,
  • Mounded

Growth Rate:

  • Moderate,
  • Fast

More Information:

Size and Form

8 to 12 feet high and 10 to 15 feet wide; upright rounded form.

Tree & Plant Care

This plant should be planted in open sunny sites for best flowers and fruit.
Prefers well-drained soil.
Avoid wet sites.

Disease, pests and problems

Leaf spots, fireblight, and Japanese beetles.

Native geographic location and habitat

Native to China

Attracts birds & butterflies

Provides food and shelter for a number of bird species.

Leaf or needle arrangement, size, shape, and texture

Simple, alternate, small leaves about 1 to 2 inches long. New leaves are gray-green, turning blue-green in summer.
Fall color is a soft yellow.

Flower arrangement, shape, and size

Small, white flowers in clusters in late spring.
Slightly unpleasant smell.

Fruit, cone, nut, and seed descriptions

Showy red, 1/3-inch diameter fruits (pomes) in late summer into fall.
Appears with leaves adding nice color contrast in the fall.


Location of Cotoneaster multiflora (Showy cotoneaster) at the Arboretum