Care of a Snowball Bush


The snowball bush is actually a type of viburnum, appropriately named because of the fragrant, pure-white clusters that burst out in early spring. Snowball bushes are among the most popular shrubs in the home landscape, and with good reason. They're not only stunningly beautiful, but they are easy to grow and after the first two years, require very little care.

Step 1

Water mature snowball bushes during hot, dry weather. Snowball bushes require very little water other than normal rainfall, unless they've just been planted. Water new snowball bushes deeply once a week for the first two years.

Step 2

Feed snowball bushes a balanced, time-release fertilizer every spring. Sprinkle the fertilizer around the bush's drip line, which is where rain would drip from the outer branches.

Step 3

Prune any spindly or weak canes and remove older canes. Prune the tips of branches to keep the snowball bush nicely shaped or to limit its size. Prune in early spring unless you plan to do a drastic pruning. In that case, wait until the tree has finished blooming so you don't trim away the blooms.

Step 4

Spread a 3- to 4-inch layer of organic mulch such as bark chips or dried grass clippings around the snowball bush in early spring. Keep the mulch at least 6 inches away from the trunk to avoid decay

Things You'll Need

  • Time-release fertilizer
  • Pruning shears
  • Organic mulch


  • Clemson University Extension: Viburnum
  • Yardner: Caring for Viburnum
Keywords: snowball bush, viburnum, time-release fertilizer

About this Author

M.H. Dyer is a long-time writer, editor and proofreader. She has been a contributor to the East-Oregonian Newspaper and See Jane Run magazine, and is author of a memoir, “The Tumbleweed Chronicles, a Sideways Look at Life." She holds an Master of Fine Arts from National University, San Diego.