Mahonia nevinii

Family: Genus:

Plant type:

Biomes/Growing conditions: , , , ,

Sun exposure:

USDA Hardiness zone: Zn4b -20º to -25ºF

Foliage color:

Foliage season:

Mahonia nevinii

Nevin’s mahonia or barberry is a remarkably tough evergreen shrub for the roughest locations. A moderately fast growing evergreen with somewhat fiercely armed blue green leaves. New growth of divided leaves is conspicuously tinted red. In spring small yellow flowers appear and cover the whole shrub, by late summer these have morphed into translucent red berries relished by birds. Native to southern California and surprisingly cold tolerant – like zone 4b tolerant thats -25ºF. Its kind of funny that we didn’t go for this remarkable durable plant. a long time ago, instead we were saddled with the horror of English holly.  Once established it requires absolutely no further irrigation.  It’s perfectly adapted to our winter wet summer dry climate. Full sun is non-negotiable Excellent shrub for rural areas as it is incredibly resistant to deer and even rabbits, In time it becomes a dense rounded shrub- very handsome. Excellent shrub to deter unwanted folks or animals. I’ve often thought this would be an ideal rural hedge with little care beyond planting and watering to establish- then set it free. Virtually any well drained soil. Avoid standing water at any time of the year. Beautiful, tough west coast native shrub. 8′ by 6′ in 7 years.

Photo credit: Jim Bishop


My Favorites

More climate-adapted plants