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Montana Field Guide

Montana Field Guides

Nannyberry - Viburnum lentago

Species of Concern
Native Species

Global Rank: G5
State Rank: S2S3
(see State Rank Reason below)

Agency Status
MNPS Threat Rank: 2
C-value: 6

External Links

State Rank Reason (see State Rank above)
Three known occurrrences in eastern Montana.
General Description
Nannyberry is a tall shrub that is up to 3 m high with usually smooth, gray to reddish brown bark. The opposite leaves have broadly elliptic, pointed blades that are 5-9 cm long with finely toothed margins. The winged petioles are 10-27 mm long and have sparse, reddish brown hairs at the base. Foliage is glabrous. Small flowers are borne in open, umbrella-like inflorescences that are 5-12 cm across and sessile amongst leaves on the tips of the branches. Each flower has a tubular calyx with 5 short lobes and a white, bell-shaped, 5-lobed corolla that is 2-3 mm long. The 5 stamens are exserted from the corolla. The dark blue, globose fruit is 10-14 mm long and has a thin, whitish, waxy coating.

Flowering in June.

Diagnostic Characteristics
The other species of Viburnum in our area have lobed leaves. Viburnum lentago is more likely to be confused with Cornus stolonifera, which has red twigs and entire-margined leaves.

Species Range
Montana Range


Range Comments
MB to QC, south to CO, NE, MO and GA (Lesica 2012. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants. BRIT Press. Fort Worth, TX).

Observations in Montana Natural Heritage Program Database
Number of Observations: 5

(Click on the following maps and charts to see full sized version) Map Help and Descriptions
Relative Density



(Observations spanning multiple months or years are excluded from time charts)

Openings in riparian forests on the plains.

Ecological Systems Associated with this Species

The following animal species have been reported as pollinators of this plant species or its genus where their geographic ranges overlap: Bombus pensylvanicus and Bombus griseocollis (Colla and Dumesh 2010).

  • Literature Cited AboveLegend:   View Online Publication
    • Colla, S.R. and S. Dumesh. 2010. The bumble bees of southern Ontario: notes on natural history and distribution. Journal of the Entomological Society of Ontario 141: 39-68.
    • McGregor, R.L. (coordinator), T.M. Barkley, R.E. Brooks, and E.K. Schofield (eds). 1986. Flora of the Great Plains: Great Plains Flora Association. Lawrence, KS: Univ. Press Kansas. 1392 pp.
  • Additional ReferencesLegend:   View Online Publication
    Do you know of a citation we're missing?
    • Lesica, P. 1994. Vegetation and ecological condition of the south Wolf Mountains, Padlock Ranch, Big Horn County, Montana. Unpublished report for The Nature Conservancy, Montana Field Office, Helena. 12 pp.
    • Lesica, P., M.T. Lavin, and P.F. Stickney. 2012. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants. Fort Worth, TX: BRIT Press. viii + 771 p.
    • Little, E.L., Jr. 1979. Checklist of United States trees (native and naturalized). Agriculture Handbook No. 541. U.S. Forest Service, Washington, D.C. 375 pp.
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Citation for data on this website:
Nannyberry — Viburnum lentago.  Montana Field Guide.  .  Retrieved on , from