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Small viburnum, Walter’s viburnum
Viburnum obovatum

Copyright by: Cara Abbott iNaturalist

General Landscape Uses: Accent or specimen shrub or small tree. Informal and formal hedges. Buffer plantings.

Availability: Widely cultivated.

Description: Small to medium tree with a broadly spreading crown. Trunks to 6 inches in diameter, but usually much less in South Florida. Bark nearly black, furrowed. Leaves temperate semi-deciduous, dark green above, pale beneath, about 1/2-1 1/2 inches long.

Dimensions: Typically 10-20 feet in height in South Florida; to 30 feet in Florida. Often as broad as tall.

Growth Rate: Moderate.

Range: Southeastern United States south to Broward County and the Monroe County mainland. Very rare in southeastern Florida. In Broward County known only from Fern Forest Nature Center. For a digitized image of Elbert Little's Florida range map, visit the Exploring Florida website. A number of new discoveries in South Florida have occured since the production of Little's map.

Plant Map Map of select IRC data from peninsular Florida.

 Map of suggested ZIP codes from South Florida north to southern Brevard, Osceola, Polk, and Pasco counties.

 Map of ZIP codes with habitat recommendations from the Monroe County Keys north to Martin and Charlotte counties.

Habitats: Floodplain forests and hammocks

Soils: Seasonally wet to moist, moderately well-drained sandy soils, with humusy top layer.

Nutritional Requirements: Moderate; can grow in nutrient poor soils, but needs some organic content to thrive.

Salt Water Tolerance: Low; does not tolerate flooding by salt or brackish water.

Salt Wind Tolerance: Low; salt wind may burn the leaves.

Drought Tolerance: Moderate; generally requires moist soils, but tolerant of short periods of drought once established.

Light Requirements: Full sun to light shade.

Flower Color: White.

Flower Characteristics: Semi-showy.

Flowering Season: Winter-spring.

Fruit: Drupe, red turning black.

Wildlife and Ecology: Provides significant food and cover for wildlife. Attracts pollinators. Birds and other animals eat the fruits.

References: Nelson 2003, Schaefer & Tanner 1997

Comments: See also the Florida Wildflower Foundation's Flower Friday page.

Copyright by: Cara Abbott iNaturalist

Copyright by: George D. Gann, 2017
In cultivation by Green Isle Gardens, Florida

Copyright by: Shirley Denton

Copyright by: Shirley Denton

Copyright by: Shirley Denton

Copyright by: Shirley Denton

Other data on Viburnum obovatum available from:

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