Blackhaw Viburnum (Viburnum prunifolium)

Blackhaw Viburnum

Make a commitment to improving the habitat around you! Nature Hills makes it easy with an abundant online catalog of native plants. Consider Blackhaw Viburnum (Viburnum prunifolium) as either a large, multi-stemmed shrub or a compact ornamental tree with a bit of pruning. You’ll create a standout landscape to feel very proud of. In spring, pristine white flower clusters are held in attractive, lacy cymes above the foliage. There is simply no missing a Blackhaw Viburnum in bloom!

Each tiny flower is accented with bright yellow stamens for a soft, fluffy look. The blooms entice critical flying pollinators and beneficial insects to come in closer. Butterflies and essential pollinators come back time and again to gather the nectar. But more than that, this is a Host Plant for caterpillars. Several butterflies and moths rely on Blackhaw to feed their larvae, including Spring azure, Baltimore checkerspot and Hummingbird moths. These larvae in turn feed flocks of songbirds looking to feed hungry chicks!

The textured, dark green foliage starts off a warm, coppery color on top and glabrous, or pale, underneath to flash and shimmer in the sunlight. The effect is amplified with red petioles that remain ornamental for a long time over the season. Blackhaw holds its interior branches at right angles, for a very full and lush look. Bask in their shade, even on small properties! As the autumn temperatures drop, the foliage turns a bold burgundy fall color.

Plant this with Forest Rouge Blackhaw or the Summer Magic Viburnum for pollination, and you’ll have a range of this incredible berry presentation to decorate the harvest season containers, wreaths and outdoor décor! By planting Forest Rouge or another Blackhaw close together, they work to pollinate each other to develop more of those dark blue drupes. As you can imagine, songbirds relish these nutritious snacks, so look quickly or you may miss them.

This rugged plant is widely adaptable and can handle tough conditions, including wet soil and partial shade. It’s a perfect choice for a new homeowner but makes an exceptional specimen in a collection. We’re excited to offer this special native tree. Both George Washington and Thomas Jefferson grew them with pride; order ornamental Blackhaw Viburnum for your landscape today!

Planting and Application:

Delight in this native choice as an anchor in your patio plantings. You’ll get beauty all year round, and the satisfaction of knowing you’ve made a responsible choice to feed butterflies and birds. Try a pair flanking on either side of a tall portico entrance. Be sure to study your trees before you plant them to allow the branches to arch up towards each other; then work to custom-fit over time with ongoing pruning cuts to shape.

Use this same technique on a larger scale. Line either side of a long driveway with durable, gorgeous Blackhaw Viburnum for a very handsome entrance. Line the back fence with Blackhaw as an easy-care ornamental backdrop. Plant a modern shrub border on the south side, using our search filters to find just the right plants for your design.

Let these showy natives retain soil on slopes or embankments. Blackhaw Viburnum is right at home near the water. Add to hard-working Rain Gardens as a right-sized anchor planting. Try an informal grouping or three or more to help filter potentially polluted water runoff from roofs and streets. Create en masse plantings with these suckering and naturalizing shrubs and stop erosion and provide habitat as these politely spread out wide when allowed.

On extensive wildlife properties, weave plenty of Blackhaw Viburnum into the mix, along with Forest Rouge and Summer Magic Blackhaw Viburnums. You’ll encourage plenty of birds and honey bees, even under the tough shade of Black Locust trees and beneath picky Black Walnut trees.

The tall nature and dense branching of Blackhaw create privacy and garden rooms to whisk away the rest of the world and surround you in shade, screening and flowering tranquility! Surround yourself with the sound of songbirds, the flutter of butterflies, the buzz of bees and gorgeous fall displays!

  • Covered in Flat-Topped Creamy-White Flowers in Spring
  • Glossy, Dark Green Leaves Held on Showy Red Petioles
  • Ornamental Native Butterfly Species Host Plant & Supports Songbirds
  • Songbirds Quickly Eat the Dark Blue-Black Drupes in Fall
  • Showy Red-Purple Fall Color
  • Train to Grow as a Small Tree or Large, Multi-Stemmed Shrub
  • Naturalizing, Hedges, Tall Privacy & Screening, Massive Wildlife Habitat

Tips for Care:

This easy-care and low-maintenance Viburnum native variety thrive in USDA hardiness zones 3 through 9. Provide at least four hours of sunlight a day. These natural understory trees perform well in partial shade, but you’ll get the best fall color and the most berries with full sun! Well-drained soils are best, although this tough little tree will put up with periodic flooding and drought. They won’t tolerate standing water for long, so protect your investment with proper site selection.

Include Nature Hills Root Booster at the time of planting. This life-long formula contains symbiotic mycorrhizal fungus and other ingredients that work with the tiny feeder roots to access micronutrients. Apply a three-inch layer of much over the root system, and you’ll cut down on surface evaporation. Please pull the mulch back away from directly touching the stems.

Moderate water is the key to a happy, healthy Blackhaw Viburnum. It’s tough, but you’ll appreciate the high performance of a consistently hydrated plant!

Prune to shape after flowering. Best to develop a pruning plan in advance, especially if you’ll keep it as a tree form. Remove the lower limbs and maintain a single trunk to achieve that formal effect. Rejuvenate naturalized shrub-form plants by removing the thickest stems at ground level every few years.

  • Wildly Adaptable – Grow in Full Sun or Partial Shade
  • Tolerates Periodically Dry and Moist Well-Drained Soil Types
  • Provide Mulched Beds & Moderate, Regular Moisture
  • Prune After Flowering To Deadhead & Shape
  • Deer Don’t Prefer the Taste & Juglone Resistant
  • Easy-Care & Low Maintenance
  • No Significant Pests or Diseases

Maximize the benefit of your landscape design with this important butterfly host and vital backyard bird plant.

Blackhaw Viburnum (Viburnum prunifolium) Details

Common name Blackhaw Viburnum
Botanical name Viburnum prunifolium
Plant type Deciduous
Hardiness zone 3-9
Growth rate Medium
Height 12 - 15 ft.
Width 6 - 12 ft.
Sunlight Full Sun, Partial Shade
Moisture Average to Moist
Soil condition Well-Drained
Pollinator-friendly Yes
Pruning time After Flowering
Flower color White