Mystery Tree: Paw Paw?

chris209May 7, 2012

Hi guys,

This little tree popped up in the garden several years ago. I've been keeping it in a pot for the last couple of years, upping the size every now and then, all the while not knowing what it is. I'm hoping that it might be a paw paw tree, although I have no idea how it would have ended up in my garden. The leaves give off a terrible odor when handled, hard to describe, kind of metallic. The leaves are 2-3 inches in length, and it's about 3 feet tall at this point. It has yet to flower. Please see the pictures I have linked below.

Thanks!

Here is a link that might be useful: Mystery Tree Pictures

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carol23_gw

My first impression is that it's some type of Viburnum. ( opposite leaves)

    Bookmark   May 7, 2012 at 9:04AM
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chris209

Hmm, that would certainly make more sense than a paw paw. Do you think it's Viburnum sieboldii? Foliage and leaf odor seems to match.

    Bookmark   May 7, 2012 at 10:16AM
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Carrie B

Is does look like sieboldii, and if it smells like one...(does anything else smell like V. sieboldii?)

    Bookmark   May 7, 2012 at 6:19PM
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chris209

Maybe I'll go looking for some V. sieboldii at the nursery and do a smell comparison :)
Thanks guys!

    Bookmark   May 8, 2012 at 2:55PM
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Carrie B

Hard for me to imagine anyone selling V. Seiboldii, but you never know... chances are, though, that there's a parent plant not too far away from this baby.

    Bookmark   May 8, 2012 at 4:41PM
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buckeye15(No OH)

It has been 34 years since I learned Viburnum sieboldii in my woody plant courses at Ohio State, and in the 34 years since I have never seen it for sale in a garden center, or grown in a nursery, but if you find someone selling it let us know. I would buy one just to win a bet that viburnum leaf beetle won't eat that smelly thing.

    Bookmark   May 8, 2012 at 4:58PM
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deejaus

I'm attaching a link with a good photo of a V. sieboldii leaf for you to compare with. Scroll down near the bottom of the page.

Dee

Here is a link that might be useful: Viburnum sieboldii leaf

    Bookmark   May 8, 2012 at 5:19PM
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chris209

Yes, I have to say the leaves in those photos look just like the leaves on my plant. I guess I won't know for sure until I have flowers and fruit to compare with as well.
Just curious. Why don't the nurseries sell them? Seems like a nice enough plant. Is it invasive in the garden?
Thanks again for the help!

    Bookmark   May 11, 2012 at 10:06AM
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Carrie B

Around here, it's considered a weed tree.

    Bookmark   May 11, 2012 at 5:17PM
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