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Viburnum Tinus

Viburnum Tinus

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What's Wrong With This Picture?

Look closely and try to imagine what this Viburnum Tinus should look like.

Refining the issue:

The flowers are all at the top. Actually, the entire shrub should be covered with flowers from top to bottom. What happened to change that?

Viburnum Tinus

Clue:

This should be a snap if you read our Winter Pruning article.

Answer:

The lower part of the Viburnum was pruned in the winter and all the flowering buds were cut off. The higher flowers escaped simply because they were out of reach of the pruners. The best time to prune should have been right after flowering or later if one wanted to keep the metallic blue berries.

Viburnum tinus, the common name is laurustinus, is an excellent easy-care evergreen shrub for USDA zones 8 and 9 (Some optimistic dealers claim zone 7, but I would be very cautious there.) It does well in heavy soils, is relatively drought tolerant and also remarkably shade tolerant. Like most Viburnum, it will look best with a bit of shade or protection in very hot areas.

The narrow, upright shrub can get to 15 feet tall, though there are many named varieties that are much lower. It also takes well to being clipped or pruned. The early spring flowers are a very showy white at a time when most plants are just waking up. The medium green new growth becomes dark green and makes and excellent background foil for lighter colored foliage or tall flowers.

This is one of my shrubs of choice for a tall evergreen hedge in USDA zones 8 and 9. A real winner if you are looking for a low-maintenance shrub with year round durability.


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