I Love Viburnum rhytidophyllum and Viburnum x pragense aka the Leatherleaf Viburnum and Prague Viburnum

May 20, 2023 | Love This!

Name:    Viburnum rhytidophyllum and Viburnum x pragense aka the Leatherleaf Viburnum and Prague Viburnum

Type of Plant:   these are May-flowering, evergreen shrubs.  Both of these are cold-hardy to Zone 5 but keep their foliage best in the winter when grown in a warm Zone 6 and up.

Why I Love This Plant:  I love these two plants for different reasons. The leatherleaf Viburnum is nice because the dark green leaves are so nicely textured. This shrub can grow large and it makes a great plant in a mixed shrub border or privacy planting.

I love the Prague Viburnum because it’s very open and lacy…there are times when it’s good to have a plant that’s a bit-see-through, and this is just the plant for that use. The leaves are smaller and the plant tall and thin. Prague Viburnum is a good plant to espalier against a wall or on a trellis. You can make this plant more dense with pruning.

Both of these Viburnums grow well in full sun to part shade. 

A Word to the Wise: These plants do best in a mild winter…although they are evergreen, in very cold winters some of the leaves will brown. Also, you’ll want to grow these in a protected location, where they aren’t exposed to cold winter winds. Prune these in early June after the flowers fade.

Leatherleaf Viburnum flowers in May and the leaves are nicely textured.

The leaves on the Prague Viburnum are smaller and thinner than the leatherleaf, and are a bit lighter in color.

This is my Prague Viburnum which is growing in part-shade. I don’t prune this to make it more bushy, because I like the fact that it’s a see-through shrub.This would b a great plant to place in front of a large wall or stone wall, since it won’t be a mass of leaves but will provide a softening of those spaces.

This leatherleaf Viburnum is growing at the Brewster Ladies’ Library on Cape Cod.


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