Berberis thunbergii, commonly called Japanese barberry, is a spiny, broad-rounded, deciduous shrub with obovate green leaves. It typically matures to 5' tall and as wide. Leaves (variably sized to 1 1/4” long) typically turn attractive shades of orange, yellow and red in fall.
Genus name comes from the Latinized form of the Arabian name for the fruit.
Specific epithet honors Swedish botanist Carl Peter Thunberg (1743-1828) who reportedly identified this species in Japan in 1784.
‘Aurea’ is a Japanese barberry cultivar that is noted for its bright yellow foliage. This is a compact, upright, somewhat slow-growing, multi-stemmed, deciduous shrub that typically grows 3-4’ tall and 3-5’ wide. Stems have sharp thorns. Variably sized leaves (to 1 1/4” long) emerge yellow and generally retain good yellow color throughout the summer when sited in proper locations. If grown in too much shade, however, leaves will turn yellow-green. Tiny, pale yellow flowers (1/2” long) appear from late April to early May in short racemes along the stems. Flowers are somewhat inconspicuous. Glossy, bright red berries form in the fall. Fall color includes orange and red.
Height: 3-4 ft.
Width: 3-5 ft.
Bloom Time:April to May
Flower Color: Light Yellow
Sun: Full sun
Special:Drought tolerant, deer resistant
Berberis Thunbergii (Barberry) 'Aurea'
Delivery and plantings are currently available in Somerset, Morris, Hunterdon and Mercer counties.