blackhaw viburnum
Blackhaw Viburnum
Terry Bonace
Beverly Shores Environmental Restoration Group
American highbush cranberry
Blackhaw Viburnum Flowers

Blackhaw viburnum (Viburnum prunifolium), often referred to simply as black haw, There are dozens of ornamental viburnums that can be planted in your garden. Among these are several natives species which can also be found growing in Beverly Shores’s woodlands. Blackhaw viburnum (Viburnum prunifolium), often referred to simply as black haw, is a viburnum variety offering many attractive features. In spring, tiny white flowers with yellow stamens appear in umbrella-like clusters. In late summer, small, elongated fruit, ripening from pink to deep purple, appears in drooping bunches. The fruit is sweet and edible and also a favorite of birds. If not eaten, it can persist and provide winter interest. The oval, dark green leaves turn orange-red to purple in the fall and contrast nicely with the deep purple fruit. Blackhaw also tolerates well the toxins released from a black walnut tree.

Blackhaw can be grown in dry to medium, well-drained soil in full sun to part shade. It also tolerates drought. Blackhaw can be maintained as a shrub up to 12 or 15 feet high and 6 to 12 feet wide by pruning or allowed to grow into a small tree that can reach a height of 30 feet. Prune immediately after flowering since flower buds form in summer for the following year. .

Forest Rouge Blackhaw

There are several cultivars of blackhaw available that offer some distinctive features or smaller size. “Forest Rouge” is slightly smaller with a height of 8 to 10 feet, and provides foliage that varies from yellow in spring to dark green in late summer and maroon in fall. Stems on new growth are dark red with yellow foliage. “Ovation” is slower growing than other blackhaws and forms a compact, columnar form up to 10 feet high and 6 feet wide. “Guardian” has dark green foliage that turns crimson red in the autumn.

If you have questions about blackhaw viburnum or other native or non-native plants, don’t hesitate to contact Terry Bonace (, Candice Smith (, or Bill Schaudt ( for assistance. Also please explore our website,, for further information on invasive plants and native replacements.

Beverly Shores Environmental Restoration Group,
P.O. Box 667, Beverly Shores, IN 46301