Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center - The University of Texas at Austin information

 Native Plant Database

Viburnum acerifolium

Mapleleaf viburnum, Maple-leaf viburnum, Maple-leaf arrowwood, Arrowwood

Caprifoliaceae (Honeysuckle Family)

Viburnum acerifolium (Mapleleaf viburnum)
Vick, Albert F. W.
Maple-leaf arrow-wood is a low, densely branched shrub, 4-6 ft. tall and 3-4 ft. wide. Flat-topped clusters of white flowers are followed by berries turning from red to blue-black. Bright- to dark-green, deciduous foliage, maple-like in shape, is very colorful in fall. A shrub with maple-like leaves and small, white flowers or uniform size in flat topped clusters.

The distinctive, purplish-pink autumn foliage makes this one of our handsomest shrubs. Another native Viburnum with 3-lobed leaves, Cranberry Viburnum (V. opulus var. americanum), has large, showy, white, sterile outer flowers in each cluster and in late summer and autumn bears red fruits suitable for jam. Few-flowered Cranberry Bush (V. edule), with red fruit and only slightly lobed leaves, occurs at high elevations in the Northeast, extending far north into Canada.

Image Gallery:

12 photo(s) available

Plant Characteristics

Duration: Perennial
Habit: Shrub
Leaf Retention: Deciduous
Leaf Arrangement: Opposite
Leaf Complexity: Simple
Leaf Venation: Palmate
Leaf Margin: Dentate
Size Notes: Dense clumps to 5 feet tall.
Leaf: Green above, pale below.
Autumn Foliage: yes
Flower: Flower 1 1/2 to 3 inches across
Fruit: Red turning purple or black.
Size Class: 6-12 ft.

Bloom Information

Bloom Color: White
Bloom Time: Apr , May , Jun , Jul , Aug


USA: AL , AR , CT , DE , FL , GA , IL , IN , KY , LA , ME , MD , MA , MI , MS , NH , NJ , NY , NC , OH , PA , RI , SC , TN , TX , VT , VA , WV , WI , DC
Canada: NB , ON , QC
Native Distribution: N.B. to Upper Peninsula MI, s. to FL & TX
Native Habitat: Thickets, Shaded woods. Mesic, mixed woods; bluffs; ravines

Growing Conditions

Water Use: Medium
Light Requirement: Sun , Part Shade , Shade
Soil Moisture: Moist , Dry
Soil pH: Acidic (pH<6.8)
CaCO3 Tolerance: High
Soil Description: Dry, rocky soils. Sandy, Sandy Loam, Medium Loam, Clay Loam, Clay, Acid-based
Conditions Comments: Suckers profusely to form large, loose, open colonies. Susceptible to Viburnum Leaf Beetle.


Use Ornamental: Color, Blooms ornamental, Fruits ornamental, Fall conspicuous, Accent tree or shrub
Use Wildlife: Birds eat the blue berries. Nectar-bees, Nectar-butterflies, Nectar-insects, Browse, Fruit-birds
Conspicuous Flowers: yes
Attracts: Birds , Butterflies
Larval Host: Spring Azure

Butterflies and Moths of North America (BAMONA)

Viburnum acerifolium is a larval host and/or nectar source for:
Spring Azure
(Celastrina "ladon" )

Larval Host
Learn more at BAMONA

Last Update: 2016-03-04