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Viburnum setigerum Tea Viburnum

Viburnum setigerum

Tea Viburnum

Known as the tea viburnum because the leaves were used by the monks on Mount Omei to make a sweet tea with medicinal properties.  Introduced by Wilson in 1901.  An upright vase shaped shrub growing 8-10' tall and 6-8' wide.  Despite its impressive fruit display, the habit is somewhat open with minimal foliage on the bottom 1/3 of the plant.  Best when planted where the lower portion of the plant can be masked by other plants.  Foliage is soft blue-green to dark green, changing to muted red in the fall.  White, slightly fragrant 2" flowers in May on short 2-leafed twigs.  Young fruits are orange-yellow changing to red and becoming translucent after the first frosts.  Zone 5

USDA Hardiness Zone:



8-10 Feet


6-8 Feet

Viburnum setigerum Characteristics

Growth Rate in the Garden

  • Moderate


  • Upright, Vase

Soil Requirements

  • Acid
  • Moist, well drained

Sun Requirements

  • Full Sun to Part Shade
  • Shade tolerant

Fall Color

  • Muted red

Flowering Season

  • Early to mid May

Fragrant Flowers

  • No


  • Bright red
  • Abundant and showy

Native to

  • Central China
  • Western China

Winter foliage

  • Deciduous