PlantsMahonia→Tall Oregon Grape (Mahonia aquifolium)

Common names:
Give a thumbs up Tall Oregon Grape
Give a thumbs up Oregon Grape
Give a thumbs up Oregon Grape Holly
Give a thumbs up Barberry
Give a thumbs up Holly-Leaved Barberry

Botanical names:
Mahonia aquifolium Accepted
Berberis aquifolium Synonym

General Plant Information (Edit)
Plant Habit: Shrub
Life cycle: Perennial
Sun Requirements: Full Sun to Partial Shade
Partial or Dappled Shade
Water Preferences: Mesic
Dry Mesic
Dry
Soil pH Preferences: Moderately acid (5.6 – 6.0)
Slightly acid (6.1 – 6.5)
Minimum cold hardiness: Zone 5a -28.9 °C (-20 °F) to -26.1 °C (-15 °F)
Maximum recommended zone: Zone 9a
Plant Height: 3 to 6 feet (.9-1.8 m) usually: to 15 feet or more
Plant Spread: 3 to 6 feet (.9-1.8 m) usually; to 10 feet or more
Leaves: Good fall color
Unusual foliage color
Evergreen
Needled
Broadleaf
Fruit: Showy
Edible to birds
Fruiting Time: Summer
Flowers: Showy
Fragrant
Flower Color: Yellow
Bloom Size: Under 1"
Flower Time: Spring
Underground structures: Rhizome
Uses: Windbreak or Hedge
Dye production
Provides winter interest
Medicinal Herb
Will Naturalize
Edible Parts: Stem
Roots
Fruit
Eating Methods: Tea
Raw
Cooked
Fermented
Wildlife Attractant: Bees
Birds
Butterflies
Hummingbirds
Resistances: Deer Resistant
Rabbit Resistant
Tolerates dry shade
Drought tolerant
Propagation: Seeds: Self fertile
Stratify seeds: seeds require a cooling period prior to germination and are best planted in the Fall
Sow in situ
Can handle transplanting
Propagation: Other methods: Cuttings: Stem
Pollinators: Self
Various insects
Miscellaneous: Monoecious
Awards and Recognitions: RHS AGM
Conservation status: Least Concern (LC)

Conservation status:
Conservation status: Least Concern
Image

Honey Bees in the Garden:  MarchHoney Bees in the Garden: March
By Mindy03 on March 3, 2011

March is here with its abundance of sprouting bulbs, swelling buds, and early blossoms. The temperatures are warmer and gardeners are busy getting early crops and flowers planted. Honey bees are zipping to and fro from the hives, searching out the earliest blossoms for the collection of nectar and pollen.

(Full article7 comments)
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Photo gallery:
Location: Castlegar BCDate: May 19 2017
By KatEnns
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Location: Grandview Heights Land - Castlegar, B.C. Date: 2010-03-06 1:43 pm. Oregon Grape leaves have deepened their colour through
By HemNorth
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Location: Copenhagen, Denmark, EUDate: 2009-02-16
By IrisLilli
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Location: Riverview, Robson, B.C. Date: 2007-10-05 4:51 pm. Shiny green leaves contrast with the lime green leaves
By HemNorth
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Location: West Valley City, UTDate: 2014-04-16
By Zencat
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Location: WashingtonDate: 2016-03-22
By Patty
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Date: 2014-08-12
By Paul2032
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Location: Grandview Heights Land - Castlegar, B.C. Date: 2006-08-05 7:43 am. The dusky blush on the berries is just like the finish
By HemNorth
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Location: Wayne, PennsylvaniaDate: 2012-04-07flower close-up
By ILPARW
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Location: Woodland Park ZooDate: 2011-04-10
By psa
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Location: Cedarhome, WashingtonDate: 2010-04-07
By Bonehead
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Location: Sherwood OregonDate: 2015-03-13spring time beauty
By Toni
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Location: Copenhagen, Denmark, EUDate: 2017-02-10
By IrisLilli
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Location: Waynesboro MSDate: 2005-03-03
By hementia
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Location: Waynesboro MSDate: 2007-02-03
By hementia
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Location: Cedarhome, WashingtonDate: 2014-05-15
By Bonehead
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Location: TwispDate: 2014-09-16Native volunteer
By lauribob
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Date: 2016-06-08Young tree, has filled out nicely not very tall yet.
By HollyAnnS
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Date: 2019-05-01
By Paul2032
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Location: Wayne, PennsylvaniaDate: 2012-04-07full-grown specimen at old library east side
By ILPARW
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Location: Wayne, PennsylvaniaDate: 2012-04-07yellow flowers and spring foliage
By ILPARW
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Location: Wayne, PennsylvaniaDate: 2012-04-07leaves and flower cluster
By ILPARW
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Location: Glen Ellyn, IllinoisDate: winter in 1980'stwo plants with winter purplish color
By ILPARW
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Location: Wayne, PennsylvaniaDate: 2017-03-19full-grown shrub in winter
By ILPARW
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Location: Exton, PennsylvaniaDate: 2020-09-13biggest & tallest plant I have ever seen of this species
By ILPARW
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Location: Exton, PennsylvaniaDate: 2020-09-13trunk and larger branches
By ILPARW
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Location: Exton, PennsylvaniaDate: 2020-09-13top of a tall plant with foliage
By ILPARW
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Comments:
Posted by ILPARW (southeast Pennsylvania - Zone 6b) on Dec 25, 2019 10:18 AM

I have known for decades that Oregon Grapeholly is in the Barberry Family. I never expected that younger botantists would become more "lumper" than I am and designate the genus as a Barberry. It develops a larger bluish fruit than any red barberry fruit and has compound leaves that makes me think it should stay as Mahonia. This species is native to the Pacific Northwest of British Columbia down into Oregon. The alternate compound leaves have 5 to 13 spiny, sessile leaflets with the whole leaf 6 to 12 inches long. When one cuts the stout, rounded stems, it oozes some yellow dye like barberry. Perfect, yellow flowers in 2 to 3 inch long and wide terminal clusters in early spring with a little fragrance. The fruit is a true berry, rounded, blue-black looking like a grape in late summer into December. It likes part-shady locations sheltered from winds in the Midwest, Mid-Atlantic, and Northeast. It likes a moist, well-drained soil that is acid up to around pH 7.0. I see it only occasionally planted in a few yards or landscapes around from the Midwest to the Atlantic. Some larger, diverse conventional nurseries sell it, and some native nurseries in the Northwest. Slow growing and sort of expensive to buy. Usually it is around 4 to 6 feet high and wide in Midwestern and Eastern US landscapes, but I found a few growing at a mall in Exton, PA that are around 15 feet high, growing in mostly shade in a very sheltered location between the parking garage and the main shopping building.

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Posted by Mindy03 (Delta KY) on Feb 12, 2012 12:41 PM

Valuable source of nectar and pollen for honey bees.

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Posted by SongofJoy (Clarksville, TN - Zone 6b) on Feb 21, 2012 9:01 AM

Native to British Columbia south to Oregon; Pacific Northwest: zone 5 and protected sites in 4.

A broadleaf evergreen with irregular branching and an upright to spreading habit.

Shoots are thick and branch infrequently; the plant is stoloniferous and colonizing.

Typically 3' to 6' tall with similar spread and is slow-growing with a coarse texture.

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Posted by robertduval14 (Mason, New Hampshire - Zone 5b) on Apr 16, 2013 5:24 PM

Oregon's state flower.

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Posted by Bonehead (Planet Earth - Zone 8b) on Mar 22, 2014 10:42 PM

Native in the Pacific NW, from southern British Columbia to northern California, east to northern Idaho and western Montana. Found in shady rocky spots, often in wet ground. Good screening plant in a shady area. Will colonize, but very prickly, so beware. Beneficial to thrushes, orioles, mockingbirds, thrashers, crows, and jays.

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Discussion Threads about this plant
Thread Title Last Reply Replies
no nervosa by bamira Feb 2, 2015 11:11 AM 2
Euonymus Japonicus by Satua Apr 17, 2021 5:33 PM 2
Identification by youngrj Dec 28, 2019 2:10 AM 3
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ID this plant by Pavelas Jul 26, 2019 8:41 AM 2
Help identify this visitor by treetop Apr 24, 2019 8:26 AM 2
Clarification on Plant by Cloud2032 Apr 7, 2019 11:07 PM 4
Plant ID Holly with blue berries? by hiyall Mar 15, 2019 2:12 PM 8
Evergreen shrub in the shade, what is it? by Clearsky Dec 31, 2018 9:24 PM 8
Help me to identify this plant by Saitarou Aug 21, 2017 1:37 PM 2
Signs of spring by purpleinopp Mar 12, 2017 11:29 AM 8

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