Berberis koreana (Korean Barberry) ‘Red Tears’ an excellent plant with four seasons.

17_09_27_7290

September 27th

Ever so often a chance purchase of a shrub gives a pleasant surprise.  Berberis koreana  ‘Red Tears’ was one such purchase and it is certainly worth considering for any garden.

Berberis, commonly known as barberry, is a large genus of deciduous and evergreen shrubs from 1–5 m tall found throughout the temperate and subtropical regions of the world. Extremely hardy, Berberis koreana (Korean Barberry) is certainly one to consider for almost any garden. Berberis koreana grows with a dense, oval to rounded habit, at a moderate rate, up to 4-6 ft/120-180 cm tall and wide. It performs best in full sun to part shade, in dry to moist, well-drained soils and is not fussy about soils provided they are not soggy or wet. The main Berberis koreana cultivar is ‘Red Tears’

Berberis koreana  ‘Red Tears’ will give four seasons of interest:-

17_04_02_5164

April 17th

This semi-evergreen shrub is native to the Korean peninsula and Japan. Its bark is reddish brown and the twigs are densely armed with short spines in groups of one to five. At this stage the main interest are the very crisp green leaves.

17_04_25_5369

April 25th

17_04_25_5368

April 25th

In mid-spring, this small, multi-stemmed. semi-evergreen shrub produces striking pendulous clusters of golden-yellow flowers. At this stage the flowers are beginning to hang in clusters but are not fully open. The leaves are also getting a red tint to their edges

17_05_10_5675

May 10th

17_05_10_5676

May 10th

17_05_13_5706

May 13th

By now the flowers are fully open and have quite a “honey” scent which fills the still evening air.

17_08_19_6845

August 19th

17_08_19_6846

August 19th

The flowers are followed by an abundance of tiny oval fruits which at this stage are yellow tinged with red.

17_08_25_6911

August 25th

17_08_28_6933

August 28th

17_08_28_6934

August 28th

17_08_28_6935

August 28th

17_08_28_6936

August 28th

The fruits ripen to bright red by the fall and are attractive to birds.

17_09_27_7289

September 27th

17_09_27_7290

September 27th

17_10_09_7358

October 9th

and then persist across the winter. Therefore extending the season of interest of this ornamental shrub.

Overall Berberis koreana  ‘Red Tears’ is an excellent shrub giving year round interest with virtually no maintenance.

Other points to consider:

Pro:

Fairly pest-free, easy to grow and to care for. Light pruning may be required to maintain a lovely shape. Drought tolerant and  deer resistant, what more could you wish for!

Perfect choice as a single specimen plant or massed in borders, for foundation plantings or as an informal barrier, screen or hedge.

Against:

The shrub can sucker from the roots and form colonies

Advertisements

7 thoughts on “Berberis koreana (Korean Barberry) ‘Red Tears’ an excellent plant with four seasons.

  1. Superb write up!
    I am still trying to found a supplier, first time I have seen it it was in a garden of Francis Peters in Belgium. Definitely worth a visit on one of his open days!

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s