David Viburnum Plants- Identification

Q: Please tell me the difference between male and female David viburnum plants. I have six plants in front of my house, but no flowers or attractive fruit.

A: Unlike holly, not all viburnums are dioecious, needing a male and a female plant to have berries. Instead, Viburnum davidiiis said to be functionally dioecious, meaning the individual flowers on adjacent plants may be “pollen acceptors” or “pollen producers”, but they aren’t, strictly speaking, male and female. In fact, you don’t have to have two sexes of David viburnum to get flowers. But you do need plants from different genetic sources in order to have fruit. David viburnum is grown from cuttings, so if a large cutting producer takes cuttings from only a few stock plants, all of the subsequent shrubs you buy will have an identical genetic makeup and will not pollinate each other. That is likely your situation. Try ordering Viburnum davidii from out-of-state plant companies. Surely those you receive will have different genetic backgrounds, which will result in cross-pollination and the fruit you want.

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