Contact Us Host an Event Volunteer Join

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions

Please forgive us, but Mr. Smarty Plants has been overwhelmed by a flood of mail and must take a break for awhile to catch up. We hope to be accepting new questions again soon. Thank you!

Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

 
rate this answer
3 ratings

Saturday - September 20, 2008

From: Silver Spring, MD
Region: Mid-Atlantic
Topic: Propagation, Seeds and Seeding, Shrubs
Title: Failure of Viburnum dentatum to produce berries in Maryland
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I planted several Viburnum dentatum shrubs in a hedgerow for my yard. Although I have some other viburnums in the yard, this shrub blooms profusely but does not ever produce berries. What can I do to encourage the berries? I have tons of pollinating insects, and everything else in the yard produces well.

ANSWER:

We got the following information from a Floridata website on Viburnum dentatum (southern arrowwood):

"You can expect arrow-wood to flower every spring, but you may not get many fruits if you have only one plant. Many viburnums exhibit self-incompatibility, which means that they cannot pollinate themselves. To get fruits, you need two different seedling plants - two vegetative clones of the same plant will not suffice."

We're not sure what you can do about this. If you purchased all your shrubs from a nursery at the same time, they are almost inevitably all clones. And since most commercially-sold woody plants are produced vegetatively, that is, by rooting cuttings or creating clones, you might have a lot of trouble finding a seed-produced plant to pollinate your viburnums. In fact, if they are all clones, even one seedling plant would probably not be sufficient, as the article says it takes two different seedling plants. Enjoy the flowers on your viburnums.


Viburnum dentatum

Viburnum dentatum

Viburnum dentatum

Viburnum dentatum

 

 

More Propagation Questions

TIps for tree grafting.
March 10, 2010 - When should you start grafting trees?
view the full question and answer

Invasive native blackeyed susans from Warren OH
August 07, 2013 - In our demo garden we master gardeners in NE Ohio have been unable to get rid of black-eyed susans which have, like the other person, prevented or "killed" the other perennial plants. They are spre...
view the full question and answer

Propagation of redbuds from shoots in St. Louis MO
July 17, 2009 - I have a beautiful, healthy old redbud tree that I love. Every year, I find baby redbud trees rooted all over my yard, Since they are deep, I can't seem to dig them out so I simply cut them down to...
view the full question and answer

Germinating Mexican Persimmon seeds in Austin, TX.
November 15, 2011 - I'm planning to germinate Mexican Persimmon seeds, and plant them this spring. I want a female for fruit. Is there any way to encourage a plant to be female, and if not, is there any way you can iden...
view the full question and answer

Transplanting of yucca plants
May 26, 2006 - We have several Arkansas Yucca plants in our yard that we want to transplant to a plant bed. How do we do that?
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.