There are many species of viburnum grown in European gardens, as these shrubs are present on our continent even in nature, therefore the cultivation, even of hybrid or particular species, is quite easy in the garden, where they certainly receive much more care than in nature . Among the most beautiful and particular viburnums certainly deserves a place the viburnum opulus, also known as the snowball viburnum, because of its huge spherical inflorescences. It is a small viburnum with deciduous leaves, which generally does not exceed 200-250 cm in height; in Italy it is also widespread in the wild, and is native to Europe and Asia; it produces large trefoil leaves, which are very reminiscent of the foliage of some maples; they are light green in color, and turn orange or yellow in the fall before falling. The shrub has an erect, slightly globular bearing, with a good development of ramifications, with fairly dense foliage. From the end of winter until the beginning of spring it produces large umbrella-like or spherical inflorescences, white or pink in color, very fragrant. The flowers of viburnum opulus are very reminiscent of hydrangea flowers, and like these, in fact, the flowers underlying four small white bracts are sterile, while the fertile flowers are devoid of bracts; therefore in the varieties with fully spherical flower in general we find only sterile flowers, while the plants that produce fertile flowers generally have umbrella inflorescences, with the outer edge consisting of sterile flowers, as in a hydrangea with lace cap inflorescence. The fertile flowers are followed by small red fruits, which often remain on the plant until the first cold winters, very decorative.
How snowball viburnums are grown
Viburnums are vigorous shrubs, which do not require great cultivation care; they dwell in the common garden soil, enriched with little universal, sandy and manure soil, so as to obtain a soft and rich substrate, where the young shrub can quickly sink its root system and develop at its best; preferably choose a semi-shaded position, because the plant does not like the strong sun of June and July, but above all because in this way the flowering lasts for a few days, letting us enjoy the beautiful inflorescences for longer.
Young recently planted plants may need watering in the dry season, especially if they persist for a long time in drought; long-dwelling shrubs generally are satisfied with rainfall due to normal spring and autumn rains; occasionally it may be necessary to water the specimens at home for a long time, during the summer. Let's avoid leaving the plant for a long time in an area of the garden subject to high humidity, because the roots are easily affected by harmful rot.
They can also be grown in pots, remember in this case to water adult plants more regularly. At the end of winter, slow release granular fertilizer for flowering plants is spread around the plant, which will melt with the rains.