The Unknown, Fragrant Viburnum

A mature Burkwood viburnum about 20 years old

A mature Burkwood Viburnum, about 20 years old

Flowers of the fragrant Burkwood Viburnum

Flowers of the fragrant Burkwood Viburnum

One of my favorite deciduous plants in my shrub border is Burkwood Viburnum (Viburnum burkwoodii). All types of the spring flowering Viburnums are wonderful, but I really like this one. It makes a good, large plant for a screen, or it can be limbed up into a tree form specimen. The spicy fragrance is terrific but not overpowering. And guess what? It is easy to grow in our native soils and responds well to pruning. Although the only pruning the one in the photo has had is to cut the flowers for arrangements. Blooms usually last about two weeks, and it flowers right after the forsythia are finishing. This fragrant Viburnum is one you will have a hard time finding at our local nurseries.

John Floyd

John Floyd has been gardening--and learning about Birmingham area gardening--for more than 30 years. In addition to his day-to-day experience, John has degrees in horticulture from Auburn and Clemson Universities and was Editor-in-Chief of Southern Living.

2 thoughts on “The Unknown, Fragrant Viburnum

    • I guess you cannot name a Viburnum that I do not like, but you are so right. Judd Viburnum has perhaps the strongest fragrance. Burkwood is sweet and mild in fragrance. Korean Spice is very fragrant, but Judd is bold and strong. While they are hard to find, I think Hanna’s Garden Center usually has a couple of plants.

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