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Berberis thunbergii f. atropurpurea 'Harlequin' (v)
  • RHS AGM
  • RHS Plants for pollinators

Japanese barberry 'Harlequin'

'Harlequin' is a compact deciduous shrub with rounded deep purple leaves, variably splashed with cream and pink, and small pale yellow flowers followed by dark red berries

Synonyms
Berberis thunbergii 'Harlequin'
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Size
Ultimate height
0.5–1 metres
Time to ultimate height
5–10 years
Ultimate spread
0.5–1 metres
Growing conditions
Chalk
Clay
Loam
Sand
Moisture
Moist but well–drained, Well–drained
pH
Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Colour & scent
StemFlowerFoliageFruit
Spring Yellow Purple Cream Pink
Summer Purple Cream Pink
Autumn Purple Cream Pink Red
Winter
Position
  • Full sun
  • Partial shade
Aspect

East–facing or North–facing or West–facing

Exposure
Exposed or Sheltered
Hardiness
H7
Botanical details
Family
Berberidaceae
Native to the UK
No
Foliage
Deciduous
Habit
Bushy
Potentially harmful
Ingestion may cause mild stomach upset. Wear gloves and wash hands after handling
Genus

Berberis can be deciduous or evergreen shrubs with spiny shoots bearing simple, often spine-toothed leaves, and small yellow or orange flowers in axillary clusters or racemes, followed by small berries

Name status

Accepted

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How to grow

Cultivation

Grows in any well-drained soil in full sun or partial shade

Propagation

Propagate by semi-hardwood cuttings

Suggested planting locations and garden types
  • Coastal
  • City and courtyard gardens
  • Cottage and informal garden
  • Low Maintenance
  • Hedging and screens
  • Flower borders and beds
Pruning

Pruning group 8

Pests

Could be affected by berberis sawfly

Diseases

May be subject to powdery mildews

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