Easily grown in average, medium moisture, well-drained soil in full sun to part shade. Prefers moist loams, but tolerates a wide range of soils. Do not allow soils to dry out in the heat of the summer. Prune as needed immediately after flowering. Propagate vegetatively.
Viburnum plicatum f. tomentosum, commonly called doublefile viburnum, is a dense, multi-stemmed, deciduous shrub with distinctively tiered horizontal branching that typically matures over time in a broad-rounded form to 8-10’ tall with a slightly larger spread. It is native to forests and thickets in China and Japan. Flowers bloom in late April-May in flat-topped, lacecap-like clusters (each to 2-4” but less frequently to 6” wide) which extend along the branches and above the foliage in double rows, hence the common name of doublefile viburnum. Each cluster has an outer ring of large, showy, snow-white, sterile florets (each to 1-2” across) surrounding a central mass of tiny non-showy fertile florets which when fertilized give way to egg-shaped 1/3” long fruits (red maturing to black) and viable seed. Ovate, toothed, strongly-veined, dark green leaves (to 4" long) turn burgundy red to purplish red in fall. A large number of cultivars have been introduced into commerce.
From Latin, viburnum is the name of a species plant, plicatum means pleated or folded in reference to leaf veins, and tomentosum means woolly in reference to fine hairs on young stems and leaf undersides.
‘Mariesii’ is a doublefile viburnum noted for its distinctively layered horizontal branching. It is a broad, dense, multi-stemmed, deciduous shrub that typically matures to 10-12’ tall and spreads to 15’ wide. Non-fragrant flowers in flat-topped, lacecap-like clusters bloom in profusion along the branches in April or May. Flower clusters appear in two rows or files, hence the common name. Each flower cluster (4-6” wide) has small non-showy inner fertile flowers with a showy outer ring of pure white sterile flowers. Pollinated fertile flowers give way in summer to red berry-like drupes which eventually mature to black. Fruits are ornamentally attractive and a food source for birds. Ovate, serrate, dark green leaves (to 5” long) turn reddish purple in fall. ‘Mariesii’ honors Chelsea gardener Charles Maries (1851-1902).
No serious insect or disease problems.
Specimen or groups. Shrub borders, foundations or hedges.