How to Grow Viburnum tinus Plants in your Garden

Gardener's HQ Guide to Growing Laurustinus / Laurestine

Viburnum tinus is an evergreen shrub that is easy to grow and adds interest to the garden all year round.

It is a native of the Mediterranean.

As a member of the Adoxaceae family it is closely related to the Adoxa, Sambucus, Sinadoxa, and Tetradoxa genera.

Many species of Viburnum are frequently grown in the garden, including Viburnum opulus (Guelder rose), Viburnum plicatum (Japanese snowball), Viburnum lantana (Wayfaring Tree), and Viburnum lentago (Nannyberry / Sweet Viburnum).

Viburnum tinus
Viburnum tinus cv Variegatum by Leonora Enking.

Commonly grown cultivars include Eve Price, and Gwenllian (both pink and white flowers); Variegatum (varigated; white flowers); Bewley's Variegated (cream-edge to the leaves; 60 inches (1.5 m) tall); Viburnum Spring Bouquet (smaller commonly grown variety; Robustum (rounder leaves of about 4 inches (10 cm), pink flowers) and French White (white flowers, up to 120 inches (3 m).

Growing Viburnum tinus will bring yearlong color to the garden. They bloom in late winter through to spring, carry blue fruits throughout the spring, and have attractive evergreen leaves all year long.

It is great for hedging and screening purposes, and can look good in an informal, coastal, or cottage garden, and even as a background or wall-side border plant. As it is low maintenance, grows well in most light conditions, and is a medium drought tolerant plant it is a relatively easy to grow garden plant. It is also a nice plant to grow if you want to attract butterflies to your garden.

Viburnum tinus Description

Growing Valeriana Description

Viburnum tinus is an evergreen shrub that usually ranges in height from 72 to 144 inches (1.8–3.7 m), but can reach heights of 275 inches (7 m). Its spread is usually around 80 inches (2 m) but can reach 120 inches (3 m).

Laurustinus flowers by Corrie Barklimore.

Shiny dark green leaves are evergreen and similar in shape to those of bay laurel (ovate–elliptic; 1.5 to 4 inches long (4–10cm) × by 2/3 to 1 1/2 inches (2–4cm) wide. They appear as opposite pairs, and typically last for two to three years.

Laurustinus fruit
Laurustinus fruit by Wendy Cutler.

Viburnum typically blooms with fragrant flowers from mid-winter to early spring (some cultivars can flower from late autumn to the start of summer).

Depending on the cultivar, flowers can be white, pink, or pinkish-white. Bud heads are about two to four inches (5–10 cm) in length, and the small flowers are flattened.

Dark blue-black fruits then follow. These are small (< 0.5 inches (1.2 cm) and oval.

Viburnum Shrub Video Guide

The following Viburnum Shrub video provides fantastic advice on growing and caring for these handy garden shrubs.

Growing Viburnum tinus

Viburnum tinus Growing and Care Guide

  • Grows well in zones 7–9, but can be susceptible to cold damage.
  • Performs well in full sunlight and partial shade; can grow in shaded areas. Can be grown in sheltered or exposed areas.
  • Soil should be moist with good drainage. Ideally, soil should be humus rich, fairly fertile and , nematode-free. Laurustinus will tolerate slightly alkaline to acidic soils, and will survive in poorer soils.

  • Space plants at 36 to 60 inches (90 – 150 cm).
  • Although they prefer a moist soil, Viburnum tinus is a moderately drought tolerant plant (light watering in prolonged dry periods will lead to better blooms).
  • Plants can also withstand salt-spray, making them ideal for coastal areas.

  • It will take at least ten years (often up to 20) for plants to gain their full heights.
  • Semi-hardwood cuttings can be taken in the summer.
  • Eating the fruits can cause mild-upset of the stomach.

  • Viburnum species require little to no pruning. Only prune to tidy-up plants (remove crossed, mis-directed, and congested shoots) and remove any diseased or damaged parts. Pruning of Viburnum tinus is performed towards the end of winter or start of spring.
  • Pests include Viburnum beetle and whitefly, Aphids, Scale insects, and tortrix moths. Diseases include leaf spot, mildew, and root rot.

I hope that you enjoyed this guide on Viburnum tinus plants. You may also enjoy the following low maintenace Gardener's HQ growing guides: How to grow Peony and Kalanchoe blossfeldiana plants.