Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Siebold Viburnum
Viburnum sieboldii

Family: Adoxaceae (a-dox-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Viburnum (vy-BUR-num) (Info)
Species: sieboldii (see-BOLD-ee-eye) (Info)


15-20 ft. (4.7-6 m)
20-30 ft. (6-9 m)

15-20 ft. (4.7-6 m)
20-30 ft. (6-9 m)

USDA Zone 4a: to -34.4 C (-30 F)
USDA Zone 4b: to -31.6 C (-25 F)
USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 C (-20 F)
USDA Zone 5b: to -26.1 C (-15 F)
USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)
USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)
USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)
USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)
USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)
USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)

Sun Exposure:
Full Sun
Sun to Partial Shade
Light Shade

Parts of plant are poisonous if ingested

Bloom Color:
White/Near White

Bloom Time:
Late Spring/Early Summer


Other details:
This plant is attractive to bees, butterflies and/or birds
Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Soil pH requirements:
5.6 to 6.0 (acidic)
6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)
6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

Patent Information:

Propagation Methods:
From softwood cuttings
From semi-hardwood cuttings
From seed; direct sow outdoors in fall
From seed; winter sow in vented containers, coldframe or unheated greenhouse
From seed; stratify if sowing indoors

Seed Collecting:
Remove fleshy coating on seeds before storing
Properly cleaned, seed can be successfully stored

Click thumbnail
to view:

By Copperbaron
Thumbnail #1 of Viburnum sieboldii by Copperbaron

By ViburnumValley
Thumbnail #2 of Viburnum sieboldii by ViburnumValley

By ViburnumValley
Thumbnail #3 of Viburnum sieboldii by ViburnumValley

By ViburnumValley
Thumbnail #4 of Viburnum sieboldii by ViburnumValley


3 positives
1 neutral
1 negative

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive coriaceous On Dec 24, 2014, coriaceous from ROSLINDALE, MA wrote:

This is a beautiful rugged small flowering tree, growing upright with (usually) a single trunk (can be trained to be multitrunked). It should be planted where there's room to grow to its mature size without a lot of pruning, as pruning destroys its picturesque natural architecture.

Flowering and fruiting are major ornamental features. I don't care for the flower fragrance, which I find heavy and foetid---hawthornlike. For best fruiting, two different clones should be near for cross-pollination. Even after the birds take the fruit, the red pedicels remain ornamental for months.

This tree tolerates considerable shade, though best flowering, fruiting, and fall color occur in full sun. Fall color varies.

This is one of the Viburnums least susceptible to Viburnum leaf beetle.

Cultivars have been selected with improved performance, 'Seneca' for fruit, 'Wavecrest' for red fall color.

Positive mgarr On May 6, 2007, mgarr from Hanover Twp., PA (Zone 6a) wrote:

If you rub the foliage in the spring it smells of green peppers. It holds it's inflorescences which are red or 2 to 4 weeks giving this tree added color.

Positive rkclimbr434 On Feb 17, 2004, rkclimbr434 from Charlottesville, VA wrote:

Like most viburnums, sieboldii is an aristocrat among large shrubs. For those who have the space for this one, your viburnum collection would be greatly improved having this one. In Virginia, I don't normally see this viburnum much. I came across it in the early 80's when I had a landscape company. And I used it to great advantage on a few jobs. The large, bright,textured leaves remain a fresh green most of the summer. Coupled with a remarkable show of blossoms,excellent fruit display, which most viburnums are famous for,and magnificent fall color, sieboldii will earn its keep as a real workhorse. I noticed also this plant stays green late into the fall, long after early frost has burnt so many shrubs.

Negative saddlebacker On May 28, 2003, saddlebacker from Lexington, MA wrote:

I have three plants, about 15 years old, all affected to some degree with borers here in Lexington, MA. I don't care for the smell of the flowers or the leaves.

Apart from those two issues, I have to agree that it's a very beautiful shrub.

Neutral Copperbaron On Jan 29, 2002, Copperbaron from Vicksburg, MS (Zone 8a) wrote:

The Siebold Viburnum from Japan can attain the size of a small tree (20). It has handsome, lustrous deep green leaves with deep veining; blooms heavily with 5" white flat-topped flowers, followed by large crops of bright orange berries and spectacular red fall foliage. The berries are hung on clusters of bright orange pedicels which persist after the berries fall, and make a gorgeous display in combination with the red foliage. The plant is hardy in Zone 4. Another remarkable viburnum.


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Clermont, Kentucky
Georgetown, Kentucky
Lexington, Kentucky
Louisville, Kentucky
Roslindale, Massachusetts
East Hampton, New York
Haverford, Pennsylvania

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