Among our native viburnums available for ornamental use, the maple leaf viburnum (Viburnum acerifolium) is the least fussy and easiest to grow. This shrub is more shade tolerant than most other viburnums. Though it prefers moist loams, it tolerates a wide range of soils. Established plants even have some drought tolerance. It is commonly found growing wild in woodlands in Beverly Shores.
Maple leaf viburnum is small, rounded and deciduous, growing 3 to 6 feet tall and 2 to 4 feet wide. It has coarsely-toothed, maple-like leaves which, like all viburnums, occur opposite or in pairs on the stem. Tiny white flowers appear in umbrella-like clusters that bloom in mid to late spring. The flowers develop into pea-sized fruit that ripen to bluish-black in late summer. The flowers and fruit attract butterflies and birds. Leaves produce reddish-purple to magenta fall color. Maple leaf viburnum will form root suckers and can develop into a colony in time.
Maple leaf viburnum should be pruned as needed immediately after flowering. It is not as widely available as other viburnums but can be found in specialty nurseries and by mail order.
If you have questions about maple leaf viburnum or other native or non-native plants, don’t hesitate to contact Terry Bonace (email@example.com), Candice Smith (firstname.lastname@example.org), or Bill Schaudt (email@example.com) for assistance. Also please explore our website, www.bserg.org, for further information on invasive plants and native replacements.