Derives its common name from the velvety, reddish pubescence covering the winter buds and emerging spring shoots which intensifies as spring approaches, distinguishing it from any other viburnum. Can be grown as a shrub, small muti-stemmed tree, or pruned to form a single stem tree. Branches are stiff, similar to that of V. prunifolium. Foliage is a lustrous dark green and leathery, making it one of its finer attributes. White flowers in May are like that of V. prunifoium with but larger. Fruit starts out green, changing to pink, then to blue and finally dark blue in the winter. In its early mature stage, fruits are downy which is a grayish white haze as seen on plums. Fall color is an outstanding glossy maroon to deep burgundy. A native species ranging from Virginia to Florida and west to Illinois and Texas. Zone (4)5
Rusty blackhaw gets its common name from the rusty-red winter buds which are quite pronounced and effective in the winter landscape, especially when protruding from a layer of fresh laden snow. The common name is often confused with Blackhaw Viburnum which is V. prunifolium.