Tibetan Cotoneaster Cotoneaster conspicuus

☠ Toxic to humans
🐾 Toxic to pets
🌸 Blooming
🍪 Not edible
‍🌱 Easy-care
Tibetan cotoneaster


The Cotoneaster conspicuus, more commonly known as the Tibetan cotoneaster, is a perennial, evergreen shrub that is recognized for its aesthetic appeal throughout the seasons. It boasts a graceful, arching growth habit, with branches that tend to spread outward as much as they grow upwards. The leaves of the Tibetan cotoneaster are small, oval-shaped, and have a glossy green surface that turns to hues of orange or red during the autumn, providing a colorful display before they fall. This plant is particularly admired for its flowers and berries. In the late spring to early summer, it produces a profusion of small, five-petaled, white or pale pink flowers. These are not particularly large, but they appear in clusters, which creates a delicate, frothy effect against the backdrop of the shiny green leaves. Following the blooming period, the flowers give way to small, rounded fruits, commonly known as berries. These are initially green but ripen to a striking red in the fall and persist well into the winter months, offering a vibrant contrast with the darker, evergreen foliage. The berries are favored by birds and provide a valuable source of food during the colder months when other resources are scarce. The plant's robust nature and the dense foliage make it an excellent choice for gardeners looking to create hedges or low borders. Its ability to thrive in various conditions adds to its popularity in landscaping. The dense leaf cover and the abundant berries contribute to its widespread use for ornamental purposes, as well as for providing shelter and sustenance for local wildlife.

Plant Info
Common Problems

About this plant

  • memoNames

    • Family


    • Synonyms

      Tibetan Cotoneaster.

    • Common names

      Cotoneaster conspicuus.

  • skullToxicity

    • To humans

      The plant in question, commonly known as the Tibetan cotoneaster, contains compounds that can be toxic to humans if ingested. While it is generally not considered highly poisonous, consuming parts of this plant, particularly the berries, can lead to gastrointestinal discomfort. Symptoms of toxicity from ingesting parts of the Tibetan cotoneaster may include nausea, vomiting, stomachache, and diarrhea. Ingesting large quantities could lead to more severe consequences, potentially requiring medical attention.

    • To pets

      The Tibetan cotoneaster is also toxic to pets, with dogs and cats being particularly at risk if they ingest the plant. Similar to humans, the primary risk comes from consuming the berries, although other parts of the plant can also be harmful if ingested. Symptoms of poisoning in pets can include vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain, and lethargy. If you suspect your pet has ingested any part of the Tibetan cotoneaster, it is important to seek veterinary care as soon as possible to ensure the health and well-being of your animal companion.

  • infoCharacteristics

    • Life cycle


    • Foliage type


    • Color of leaves

      Dark green

    • Flower color


    • Height

      6 feet (1.8 meters)

    • Spread

      6 feet (1.8 meters)

    • Plant type


    • Hardiness zones


    • Native area



  • money-bagGeneral Benefits

    • Attracts Wildlife: Cotoneaster conspicuus provides berries that are a food source for birds, attracting various species to the garden.
    • Low Maintenance: It is known for being easy to care for, requiring minimal attention once established.
    • Erosion Control: The plant's extensive root system helps to stabilize soil on slopes and banks, preventing erosion.
    • Aesthetic Appeal: This plant has attractive foliage and bright red berries, adding color and visual interest to landscapes through the seasons.
    • Hedging and Privacy: Can be used to create dense hedges that offer privacy due to its bushy growth habit.
    • Drought Tolerance: Once established, it is relatively tolerant of drought, making it suitable for xeriscaping and water-efficient gardens.
    • Winter Interest: Its evergreen leaves and persistent berries provide color in the garden even during the winter months.

  • medicalMedical Properties

    This plant is not used for medical purposes.

  • windAir-purifying Qualities

    This plant is not specifically known for air purifying qualities.

  • leavesOther Uses

    • Cotoneasters can be used to make natural dyes for fabrics, offering a range of colors from greens to yellows depending on the mordant used.
    • The dense, low-growing varieties of Cotoneaster provide excellent ground cover, reducing soil erosion on slopes and banks.
    • Dried Cotoneaster branches can be used in floral arrangements to add texture and structure to the composition.
    • The wood of Cotoneaster is hard and compact, making it suitable for crafting small items like buttons, beads, or even wood engravings.
    • Because of their dense habitat, Cotoneaster hedges can act as a noise barrier in urban gardens.
    • Cotoneaster berries can be used as a natural source of pigment for children's non-toxic paint experiments.
    • The plants can be shaped into landscape topiary forms in ornamental gardens due to their dense foliage and growth habit.
    • In urban planning, Cotoneaster species can be used to create 'green roofs' that provide insulating benefits and habitat for wildlife.
    • During the winter, the persistent berries of Cotoneaster provide an essential food source for many bird species.
    • Cotoneaster can be used in bonsai cultivation, offering a challenge for enthusiasts due to its relatively fast growth and need for regular pruning.

Interesting Facts

  • bedFeng Shui

    The Cotoneaster is not used in Feng Shui practice.

  • aquariusZodiac Sign Compitability

    The Cotoneaster is not used in astrology practice.

  • spiralPlant Symbolism

    • Resilience: Cotoneaster conspicuus, commonly known as the Tibetan Cotoneaster, often symbolizes resilience due to its ability to withstand tough growing conditions and poor soils.
    • Protection: The dense habit and the way Tibetan Cotoneaster forms a protective hedge in landscapes can embody protection, shelter, or safety for many people.
    • Abundance: With its abundant red berries, Tibetan Cotoneaster symbolizes prosperity and wealth, often reflecting an abundance in the gardener’s life or hopes for plentifulness.

Every 1-2 weeks
2500 - 10000 Lux
Every 3-5 years
Spring-Early Summer
As needed
  • water dropWater

    The Tibetan Cotoneaster should be watered deeply and thoroughly to ensure that the water reaches the roots, which is particularly important during dry spells. It does not require frequent watering; once every week or two should suffice, adjusting for rainfall. In terms of the amount, it's typically about 1 to 1.5 gallons per plant for each watering session, although this could vary based on the size of the plant and the local climate conditions. Ensure the soil is moist but not waterlogged to prevent root rot. During the winter months, reduce watering significantly and allow the soil to dry out between waterings.

  • sunLight

    Tibetan Cotoneaster thrives best in full sun to partial shade. It prefers a spot where it can receive at least six hours of sunlight each day. Though adaptable, the plant's flowering and fruiting are best when it has ample light exposure. Therefore, properly positioning the plant to ensure it gets enough natural light will benefit its growth and overall health, but it can tolerate some shade if necessary.

  • thermometerTemperature

    Tibetan Cotoneaster can endure a range of temperatures but grows best between 50°F to 70°F. It can typically survive winter cold down to around -10°F but should be protected from extreme cold and harsh winds. The plant is quite hardy and can adapt to various conditions but continuous extreme heat or cold can be detrimental.

  • scissorsPruning

    Pruning the Tibetan Cotoneaster is important to maintain its shape, health, and to encourage new growth. Prune in late winter or early spring before new growth begins, removing any dead, damaged, or diseased branches. Also, thin out crowded branches to improve air circulation. Pruning can be done annually, and the plant responds well to both light trimming and more severe pruning if reshaping is required.

  • broomCleaning

    As needed

  • bambooSoil

    Tibetan Cotoneaster thrives in well-draining soil with a mix of loam, sand, and organic matter. The ideal soil pH range is between 6.0 and 7.5. For the best growth, enrich the mix with compost or well-rotted manure to improve fertility.

  • plantRepotting

    For young Tibetan Cotoneasters, repotting every 2-3 years is sufficient. Mature plants will need repotting less frequently, approximately every 4-5 years, as their growth rate slows down.

  • water dropsHumidity & Misting

    Tibetan Cotoneaster prefers moderate humidity levels but is quite adaptable and can tolerate the dry air found in most home environments without the need for special humidity adjustments.

  • pinSuitable locations

    • Indoor

      Place Tibetan Cotoneaster in bright indirect light with some direct sun.

    • Outdoor

      Plant in sun to part shade, protect from harsh winds.

    • Hardiness zone

      7-9 USDA

  • circleLife cycle

    The Tibetan Cotoneaster (Cotoneaster conspicuus) begins its life cycle as a seed, which germinates in spring under favorable moisture and temperature conditions. Once germinated, the seedling emerges and develops into a juvenile plant, growing slowly and establishing a root system. As the plant matures, it enters a vegetative stage, producing leaves and branching out. During the reproductive stage, usually during late spring to early summer, the plant flowers, attracting pollinators with its small, white to pinkish flowers. After pollination, the flowers develop into small, red pome fruit by late summer to fall, which can be dispersed by birds and other animals, thereby spreading the seeds to new locations. Over the years, the plant can grow into a dense shrub, reaching maturity and repeating the flowering and fruiting cycle annually.

  • sproutPropogation

    • Propogation time

      Spring-Early Summer

    • The Cotoneaster conspicuus, commonly known as the Tibetan Cotoneaster, can be propagated using semi-hardwood cuttings during the late summer. This method involves cutting a piece of the plant's stem that has matured partially but is not entirely hard. The cuttings should be about 4 to 6 inches (10 to 15 centimeters) long, and the lower leaves should be removed. The cut end of the cutting should be dipped in rooting hormone to encourage root growth and then planted in a well-draining soil mix. It's important to maintain moisture and protect the cuttings from direct sunlight until they root, which typically takes a few weeks. Once rooted, the new plants can be gradually acclimatized to outdoor conditions before being planted in their permanent location.