Plant Guide


Viburnum opulus 'Roseum'

(European or common) snowball tree or bush, Guelder rose

Vigorous deciduous shrub with tall, arching branches, flowering profusely during spring with snowball-like flower clusters. Maple-like leaves with toothed and three-lobed margins, mid green, turning yellow or reddish purple in autumn. Flower clusters are 6-8 cm wide, greenish cream initially, changing to pure white, and finally pale pink.

Synonym: Viburnum opulus 'Sterile'

Viburnum opulus is native to Europe, northern Africa and central Asia. Its flower clusters consist of an outer ring of sterile flowers with conspicuous petals, surrounding a centre of tiny fertile flowers. Viburnum opulus 'Roseum' flower clusters consist entirely of sterile flowers, which is why this plant does not produce fruit, whereas on plants of the parent species the flowers are followed by red fruits.

Prefers a position in full sun or part shade and well-drained soil. Tolerates a wide range of soil types. Generally survives (but not thrives) in shade, or in wet and dry soils. Prune as needed straight after flowering. If the shrub becomes too overcrowded, you can thin it out by cutting back about one-third of the oldest branches to near ground level. Prone to aphids. Frost hardy.

A magnificent sight when in flower during spring with fluffy snowball-like flower clusters hanging at the ends of the arching branches.

Type of plant

Shrub - Deciduous


to 3-4 m tall and 2.5-4 m wide

Landscape Use

specimen shrub for flower display


  • Temperature: Hardy
  • Light: Medium High
  • Moisture: Medium
  • Soil: Light Medium Heavy
  • Wind tolerance: Average