Mahonia fortunei - Chinese mahonia
Approximately seventy species of Mahonia are native to Central and North
America and Asia. The genus Mahonia is very closely related to the
barberries (Berberis.) Stem and
floral characters separate the two genera. The compound foliage of this species
is very different from the simple leaves of locally cultivated barberry.
Chinese mahonia has soft, dark green leaves and attractive yellow flowers in
winter. It branches more than some mahonia species, giving it a full, bushy
appearance. The small blue-black fruits are seedy but edible. Reportedly,
compounds from this plant are being studied for their antibacterial properties.
See this plant on the north sides of buildings 1 and 39.
Medium shrub to about six feet tall.
Light: part shade to full shade
Water: moderately drought tolerant when established, may benefit from irrigation during droughts
Soil: adaptable to soils, no special requirements
This is an easy shrub for a shady spot in a northeast Florida garden. It is very adaptable except to wet soils.